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Thread: Why Men Marry

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    Why Men Marry

    Why (and who) do men choose to marry? In a new book entitled VoiceMale (Simon & Shuster, 2007) author Neil Chethik examines the findings from a national survey of married men. And some of his findings just might surprise you.

    Why (and who) do men choose to marry? How do men define happily ever after? Are men really commitment-phobic and sex-obsessed? In a new book entitled VoiceMale: What Husbands Really Think About Their Marriages, Their Wives, Sex, Housework, and Commitment (Simon & Shuster, 2007) author Neil Chethik examines the findings from a national survey of married men, including in-depth interviews with 70 men and a survey of another 288. And some of his findings just might surprise you.

    Why Do Men Marry?

    Contrary to what some of my girlfriends have said, men do not marry for free laundry service. According to VoiceMale, "Men propose marriage primarily because they want the physical, emotional and intellectual companionship of a woman. Men like company."

    Are men commitment-phobic? Not with the right woman. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, nine out of 10 men will marry in their lifetime. And according to the VoiceMale survey, "Men do the proposing 85 per cent of the time. At least formally, it is overwhelmingly men who initiate the marriage commitment."

    Can you drag a man to the altar? Not likely. According to Chethik, "Men entertain the idea of marriage only when they're ready." And these days, men judge readiness as a "flagging interest in the singles scene." One man quoted in VoiceMale stated, "One morning I woke up next to a woman who could have been a Playboy model, and I didn't want her."

    Where Do They Meet the Women They're Going to Marry?

    * 24% of husbands met their wives in school
    * 18% met their wives at a social event, such as a party or wedding
    * 18% were introduced to their wives by friends
    * 23% of men married in the last three years met their wives at work
    * 6% met their wives at a bar (Who says you never meet someone nice at a bar!)
    * 4% met their wives at church, synagogue or another religious setting
    * 1% met online. "Because of the newness of online dating, no studies have yet been completed on whether marriages that begin online are more or less successful in the long term than those that start in more traditional ways."

    What Do Men Look for in a Future Wife?

    Surprisingly, beauty was not the most important criteria for a man in choosing a wife. Sure, beauty attracts, and attraction is crucial, but the most important factors men look for in a woman are a positive outlook and self-confidence. Also high on the list were brains (hallelujah!), self-respect, motherliness and for some, devoutness to faith.

    What's more, according to Chethik's survey, "A man who knows within a month of meeting a woman that he wants to marry her is likely to be happier in the marriage than a man who takes longer to decide."

    Do Married Men Get Enough Sex?

    The stereotypes are true. Most married men don't get as much sex as they'd like. (Although in fairness, many single men don't get as much sex as they'd like either.)

    However, the solution for all the sex-starved husbands might be as close as the broom closet. According to the VoiceMale survey, "The more satisfied a wife is with the division of household duties, the more satisfied a man is with his marital sex life." That's right guys, there's nothing sexier than a man who knows how to use a toilet brush.

    In the honeymoon phase (the first three years) men are generally happy with their sex lives (54 per cent get it at least three times a week, and eight per cent get it every day!). But the childrearing years (years four-20) are the toughest for men sexually.

    The number of men having sex three times per week drops to 24 per cent. The next stage of marriage (years 21-35) brings with it an increase in sex, 29 per cent of men report their wives have an equal sex drive. And finally, in the last stage of marriage (35 years or more) the frequency of sex drops considerably, but 88 per cent of men are satisfied with their sex lives during this phase of marriage.

    As far as happily ever after is concerned, you might be interested to know that 93 per cent of the men surveyed by Chethik said if given the chance, they'd marry the same woman all over again. Now who's afraid of commitment?

    Lík börn leika best.

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    For the men out there who want to be married – what makes them wish to get married? What is the mindset, belief, or desire behind it – since it seems to be so culturally taboo?

    Guys are far less complex than women, and I’m not saying that as a man – who has yet to figure out the female species. The reason men want to get married is far less complicated than one might imagine. Each case is individually unique, but the overall ideas are that they are happy, and content with their mate. Beyond simply caring about the person they’re with – men, like women – are also looking for the comfort and stability that comes with a marriage.

    That means also being ready for a family, and being ready to provide for that family. Men do have a fundamental urge to protect, and care for others in a way such as “having a family.” Which means taking care of the people closest to them.

    For many guys it can also mean they’re finally financially ready to commit in that way. People often forget about the financial burden that marriage brings on. It doesn’t just mean you have 2 incomes to work with, or that someone will be taken care of while the other person works. It means your credit scores will often be looked at in the same light, and that the financial choices you make will have consequences beyond your own well-being.

    For a guy whose primary goal is to start, and care for a family – which marriage triggers – this is a huge sticking point. Someone who isn’t financially ready to commit on that level – can’t, won’t, and really shouldn’t until they are fully prepared.

    But, you can talk about an urge to protect, financial repercussions of marriage, and really almost anything on the subject – and the truth is ultimately men get sick of dating – just like women do. It’s not to say that men settle with something they don’t want – it’s just to say that, over time, the mindset of a man – when it comes to dating, and the approach of dating evolves over time.

    Both men and women have the same fundamental urges. Men don’t want to spend their lives alone, hopping from one bed to another, any more than anyone else. So, this generalization, is one that is not only inaccurate, but also simply off.

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