What Are The Hardest Marriage Vows To Keep?

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To have and to hold from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, as long as we both shall live...

We're all familiar with the famous wedding vows.

And we're all equally familiar with how hard it is to stick to them. Just look at the divorce rate - clearly honoring your vows is a heck of a lot harder than saying them. A recent poll from 60 Minutes and Vanity Fair found out exactly how challenging it is for spouses to stay true to their "I do's."

For women, these vows proved to be the most trying:

  • For better or for worse (32%)
  • To be faithful (25%)
  • In sickness and in health (16%)
  • For richer, for poorer (12%)

For men, the most difficult vows are:

  • To be faithful (27%)
  • For better or for worse (23%)
  • For richer, for poorer (18%)
  • In sickness and in health (17%)

And that's not all that 60 Minutes and Vanity Fair discovered about love.

They also found that, although most men and women would never betray their partners' trust, women are slightly more likely than men to sneak a peek at their spouse's e-mail.

The act of asking a father for his daughter's had in marriage is slowly on its way out. 45% think it's a necessary courtesy, but the rest consider it "gallant but unnecessary," "old-fashioned and embarrassing," or "sexist and offensive."

When it comes to the idea of love at first sight, unmarried couples are the most romantic. 66% of respondents in a relationship said they believe in the phenomenon, compared to 58% of married respondents and 48% of single respondents.

Where sex is concerned, the majority of people think it's "very important" (62%). Only a few think it's the "most important" aspect of a relationship (5%) or "not very important" (6%), with most falling somewhere in between at "somewhat important" (25%).

Thankfully, the in-law horror stories that are so popular in pop culture seem to largely be myths. The vast majority of couples think they get along well their spouses' families (71%). Only a few say "There's no love lost between us" (12%) and even fewer think the feelings differ depending on which side you ask.

No matter how much you love your partner, something about them is bound to drive you crazy. The most common coupled up complaints are:

  • Sharing a bed (7%)
  • Sharing a bathroom (13%)
  • Doing household chores (16%)
  • TV choices (36%)

But let's get real: if the toughest part of your marriage is deciding whether to watch basketball or American Idol, you've really got nothing to complain about.

How to Manage a Relationship as an Entrepreneur

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Speaking from experience, managing a relationship as an entrepreneur is difficult to do. It's not the same as your average relationship because entrepreneurs are starting and running businesses from the ground up. Often times by themselves. So they work crazy hours and are hardly ever home. That means you don't get to see or talk to your significant other as much, let alone spend quality time together.

That said, my wife and I have managed our relationship well over the last couple of years while I've built my business. Here are the 5 things we did to make it work.

1. Establish a Work Schedule: I work long days, so I expect to be interrupted sometimes. However, I do need to get things done, and being interrupted constantly will keep me from being productive (it can be annoying, too).

So my first tip is to establish a work schedule. This schedule should more or less be your "off limits" time, where you can work as interrupted-free as possible. If you both are on the same page here, this will allow you to get some work done and avoid petty arguing because your significant other knows when it's ok, and not ok, to bother you.

2. Pencil in Dates: It's important to spend time together. However, this can be easier said than done though when an entrepreneur is busy working 24/7.

What you need to do is schedule a time for your date. No work, no interruptions. This time is just for the two of you to enjoy each other's company.

It's even easier to accomplish if you make your date night the same day each week. For us, Saturdays are usually the day where my work schedule is more relaxed, allowing us to go catch a movie or dinner any time that we want.

3. Communication is Huge: I can tell you from experience that it's very easy to go without communicating with your significant other if all you're doing is working day in and day out.

We all know that's unhealthy for a relationship, right?

So what I recommend doing is making it a point to talk to your partner. Take a break from your work every so often just to say hi. Send text messages frequently, or leave notes on the counter. Do something to keep the communication going between the two of you.

Otherwise, you might as well be trying to manage a long distance relationship.

4. Let the Little Things Go: You hardly see each other as is. Do you really want to spend your "quality" time arguing about stuff? Some things are unavoidable, like the finances or kids (if you have them). However, things like forgetting to take out the trash or hanging up the clothes is petty. Why let that ruin your time together?

It shouldn't.

5. Remember Why You're Doing It: As hard as managing a relationship and entrepreneurial projects are, I (you/we) do it so we can improve our lives and the lives of those we care about. It's a small sacrifice now that will pay off big down the road. So, keep the reasons you have in mind at all times, and think of them often. It'll make the times when you're frustrated or you miss your spouse much easier to handle.

About the author: Hi, my name is Matt. I'm the co-owner of, which is one business (of several) that I've built while maintaining a strong relationship with my wife. If you have any questions or feedback, I'd like to hear them. Let me know in the comments below.

JDate Leads in Jewish Marriages

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The Jewish New Year just happened and I noticed that JDate has more to celebrate than Rosh Hashanah. They just released the results from a survey by ResearchNow (an independent research company) which shows that JDate is responsible for 52 percent of all Jewish marriages that started online. From the survey of 948 married Jewish internet users they also concluded that 63 percent of the online dates originated at JDate, this is many times more than the leading competing dating services. The survey also showed that 76 percent of Jewish internet users who used an online dating site to find love, became a member of JDate.

For more information and statistics you can read this post from the JDate blog. To find out if this dating service is something you would be interested in you can also check out our review of JDate.

eHarmony Discovers That “How You Meet Your Spouse Matters” (P. II)

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When Dr. Gian Gonzaga and the research team at eHarmony decided to conduct a study on the relationship between divorce and the way couples meet, they found themselves confronted with a couple of hurdles to clear:

  • Online dating is a relatively new phenomenon - it's been around for a little over a decade, and only been popular for the last 7 or 8 years. That's not a significant amount of time for a large number of couples to meet, marry, and then separate, and the sample size would likely have been too small to create an accurate study.
  • One method of running the study would be to simply sample the American population at random, hoping that a significant number of people who had gotten divorced met their former spouses on an online dating site. The research team would have to hope that, through sheer luck, they would find a large enough number of people who had A) Married in the last decade, B) Met their partner on a particular online dating site, and C) Gotten divorced from that person. But surveying the entire population of the United States is far from practical, and leaves too much to chance.

Instead, the eHarmony team, aided by Opinion Research Corp., "identified an online panel of 4,000 people who had been married to AND divorced from that person in the last 15 years," with a focus on marriages that began between 2005 and 2009. Though their final sample size was small - only 506 people - their findings are still interesting. In most cases, "the expected number of divorces was very close to the actual number of divorces...observed in the sample," which means that "it didn't really matter how you met your spouse, you were just as likely to get divorced." The most notable results from the study showed that:

  • People who met on eHarmony were 66.6% less likely to get divorced.
  • People who met through school were 41.1% less likely to get divorced.
  • People who met at a bar were 24% more likely to get divorced.
  • People who met through unspecified other means were 16% more likely to get divorced.

Their findings are food for thought, but the eHarmony team acknowledges that they are far from definitive: "We realize the numbers of eHarmony divorces is pretty small and this is only one sample of divorces. We don't know if these results will replicate in another sample or generalize to all marriages. Those are important limitations to this study that need to be acknowledged. We're already working on replicating these findings to address these limitations."

It is also important to remember, as Dr. Gonzaga notes, that studies like these show only WHAT happened, not WHY it happened. "How you met your spouse is only one of many reasons for why a couple eventually ends up unhappy or divorced," he writes. "Many relationships that start off shaky end up lasting a lifetime. Others that have a great foundation still end up in trouble. How you meet is only the starting point. You, and your spouse, control where you end up."

Read the original post here and for more details on the matchmaking service which conducted this survey please read our review of eHarmony.

eHarmony Discovers That “How You Meet Your Spouse Matters”

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Does where you meet your spouse make a difference in how happy the marriage is and if the relationship lasts?

According to a marriage study conducted for eHarmony in December of 2010, online dating is currently the 3rd most popular way for newlyweds to meet (following work/school and friends/family), and eHarmony is now responsible for nearly 100,000 marriages per year in the United States. Bringing couples together is an admirable occupation - but it doesn't mean much if the relationship isn't built on a strong foundation that can stand the test of time. In the words of eHarmony's Dr. Gian Gonzaga: "my colleagues and I aren't doing our jobs correctly if all we do is bring people together.... It's not about creating a lot of relationships; it's about creating a lot of good relationships."

With that idea in mind, Gonazaga and his team asked themselves the question posed at the start of this post. Does where you meet your partner have an effect on how happy you are in your relationship, and whether or not the relationship lasts? After failing to find any studies that investigated the matter, Gonzaga and his researchers decided to take matters into their own hands, in conjunction with Opinion Research Corp.


The first study, an online survey of 7,386 adults who married within the last 5 years, examined relationship satisfaction. Participants were asked how they met their spouse, and were then directed to use the Couples Satisfaction Index, a well-known test developed at the University of Rochester, to measure their relationship satisfaction. eHarmony users scored well: couples who had met on the site were more satisfied with their marriages than couples who had met on, via friends or family, or at a bar or other social gathering. Couples who had met on eHarmony also reported higher relationship satisfaction than those who had met through their jobs or at school, but the difference was much less significant.


Participants in the study were also asked if their relationship had "lost the spark," as a loss of chemistry between partners is often a precursor to relationship dissatisfaction. Once again, people who met on eHarmony fared well: couples from the site were least likely to feel that the magic was gone from their relationship.

But what about the major issue of divorce? Does how a person meets their spouse have any relation to the likelihood that they will get divorced? eHarmony researchers asked people whether they or their spouse had ever seriously suggested separating or divorcing, and it turns out that the "proportion of couples who discuss divorce doesn't differ widely across the various ways couples met." eHarmony couples were the least likely to discuss divorce, but the numbers were not statistically different from couples who met at church/place of worship, work/school, and through family/friends. There were, however, "statistically significant differences between the eHarmony couples and those who met at bars/social events and those who met on"

Talking about divorce is, of course, only an indicator of divorce - it is not a divorce itself. To get a clearer picture of the link between divorce and the location where couples met, eHarmony conducted a second study. Read on to hear more about what they found.

For more information on the dating site which conducted this survey please read our review.

The Science Of Monogamy (Or In This Case, Nonmonogamy), Part III

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We've already discussed 4 reasons some scientists believe that monogamy is the right choice for human relationships - now it's time to take a look at a few of the arguments for nonmonogamy.

Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jetha, authors of a new book called "Sex at Dawn: The Prehistoric Origins of Modern Sexuality," looked at the soaring divorce rate, the rising numbers of single parents, and the success of industries like couples therapy, and decided that something was terribly wrong with relationships in America. Their theory about the origin of this disaster is simple: "From a biological perspective, men and women simply aren't meant to be in lifelong monogamous unions." Ryan and Jetha offer evidence from the worlds of archaeology, biology, physiology, and anthropology in favor of embracing our nonmonogamous history:

1) Nonmonogamy is our natural state - monogamy only became important as property became a part of human lives. The advent of agriculture, about 10,000 years ago, changed human society forever. "Property wasn't a very important consideration when people were living in small, foraging groups where most things were shared, including food, childcare, shelter and defense," Ryan told Sexuality was also shared, and paternity was not an issue. As agriculture began to play a larger and larger role in human lives, however, men began to worry about whether or not children were biologically theirs, so that they could leave their accumulated property to their biological children after their deaths. Monogamy was just an easy way to guarantee that a man was the biological father of the children he was raising.

2) Having multiple partners is biologically advantageous. In pre-agricultural times, multiple men would mate with one woman. Afterwards, her reproductive system would distinguish which sperm cells were most compatible with her genetics, resulting in the healthiest possible child.

3) Humans are built to seek out novelty. Humans evolved to be sexually responsive to novelty, making a lifetime of blissful monogamy a difficult prospect. Genetically, humans are programed to seek out new partners (known as the Coolidge effect) and are less responsive to familiar partners (the Westermarck effect). Ancient humans were motivated by this drive to leave their small hunter-gatherer societies in favor of joining other groups, thereby avoiding incest and providing genetic variety and strength to future generations.

4) It's just plain unrealistic to expect that someone will only be attracted to one partner for the rest of their lives. Monogamy is a valid relationship choice, but deciding to follow a monogamous path doesn't mean that you will never feel the desire to have sex with other people again. It is unfair that modern society makes people feel like failures for looking at or fantasizing about someone other than their partners. Curiosity is just human nature.

Despite Ryan and Jetha's compelling research in favor of nonmonogamy, they do not believe that monogamy is unsustainable: "Lifelong sexual monogamy is something we can certainly choose, but it should an informed decision," says the FAQ on their Web site. "We're not recommending anything other than knowledge, introspection, and honesty... What individuals or couples do with this information (if anything) is up to them."