Monday, July 12, 2010

Why women marry the wrong man

I called off my first wedding. In the months following the breakup, I was astounded by the number of women (and a few men) who confided in me that they wished they had the courage to call off their own first weddings.

They all stated, in one way or another, that “I knew I was making a mistake as I was walking down the aisle.” I realized that maybe this was one of the reasons the divorce rate was so high — many marriages are doomed from the start because the bride and/or the groom already know it’s a mistake. And they get married anyway!

I wondered why smart men and women would choose walk down the aisle into a marriage they already felt would be a mistake. I also wanted to figure out why I came so close to marrying the wrong guy myself. Even though my fiancé was a very nice man, he was not the right man for me. Deep down, I had known that from the very beginning of the relationship. Why did a smart and capable woman get engaged to the wrong guy? I knew if I talked to enough women, I would uncover a pattern.

Q: So, what are the red flags that indicate someone is “marrying the wrong guy?”

Anne Milford (co-author with therapist Jennifer Gauvain of How Not To Marry the Wrong Guy: A Guide For Avoiding the Biggest Mistake of Your Life): Red flags in relationships are problematic actions, attitudes, and behaviors exhibited by your partner. But red flags aren’t always so obvious — they aren’t just “bad” behaviors, such as dishonesty or infidelity.

Vastly differing beliefs or likes and dislikes (religion, jobs, parenting style, etc.) are another kind of red flag. Whatever kind it is, a red flag should make you stop and think. These warning signs offer clues about your boyfriend’s character. Ignore them at your own peril. More>>

Q. Why do women marry the wrong guy?

Milford and Gauvain: After talking to hundreds of women who married the wrong guy, we uncovered the three most common reasons why they walked down the aisle:

  1. They got caught up in the momentum...
  2. Feelings of fear, shame, and embarrassment about publicly admitting that getting married was a mistake.
  3. Financial concerns...

Marrying the wrong guy starts with dating the wrong guy! Why do women of all ages settle in their relationships? We discovered five reasons why women date the wrong guy:

  1. Loneliness and insecurity
  2. Believing the relationship is the solution to their problems
  3. External pressures to get married
  4. Thinking that “he will fix me” or “I will fix him”
  5. Ignoring red flags and gut feelings: "f I don’t date/marry this person, I will never find anyone else!"

The Science of Sex: Why Older Women Lust
Buss, Easton, and their colleagues found that women in their 30s and early 40s are significantly more sexual than younger women. Women ages 27 through 45 report not only having more sexual fantasies (and more intense sexual fantasies) than women ages 18 through 26; the older women also report having more sex, period. And they are more willing than younger women to have casual sex, even one-night stands. In other words, despite the girls-gone-wild image of promiscuous college women, it is women in their middle years who are America's most sexually industrious.

Dating Service: Older women, younger men
The New York Times looks at the sup­posed explo­sion of cougar­dom among any dat­ing ser­vice, dat­ing web­sites, and any dat­ing agency: Newsweek, tak­ing stock of the explo­sion of on-screen romances between older women and younger men, declared 2009 “the year of the cougar,” but then con­cluded in the June arti­cle that “by this time next year, the cougar will be extinct.” Maybe so — if you’re talk­ing about tele­vi­sion or the box office. But behind the unleash­ing of cougars in pop cul­ture is what a grow­ing num­ber of soci­ol­o­gists say is a real demo­graphic shift...

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