I usually do not cross-post from my Living Single blog. Instead, I write different posts for Psychology Today and All Things Single, with the latter sometimes a bit more personal. In case there are people who read this blog but not my Living Single blog, I wanted to repost about Friendsight: What Friends Know that Others Don’t.
When I first focused on the study of singles and singlism, I was a tenured full professor at a major university and I thought I would continue to be a full-time academic until the day I retired — which I assumed would be decades into the future. That was in the late 1990s. I never would have guessed that by the year 2000, my planned one-year sabbatical would turn into something else entirely.
With Valentine’s Day approaching, my inbox is filling up with the usual pitches from people who think that since I write about single life, what I and my readers must really crave is a marriage partner. I’ve written posts mocking them before, but they don’t read, they just try to sell.
Amidst the offers of access to an interview with some king or queen of sugar babies, and the pitches illustrated by condoms arranged in the shape of a heart, was something a little different, with no accompanying obnoxious illustrations. The email began like this:
Over at Living Single, I wrote an in-depth critique of a recent study about single men and their purportedly more anti-social behavior than married men. In the first post, Actual Newspaper Headline: ‘Married Men Better Men,’ I worked through the details of the study, including the actual items used to measure anti-social behavior and the point-by-point results of the research. In the second post, Naughty or Nice? Single Men and Married Men, I explained what I thought the results really did mean.
Just posted in the New York Times is an essay in Pamela Paul’s “Studied” column called, The Marrying Kind: Born or Made? She includes my point that the difference in scores on the anti-social behavior scale between the single and married men was underwhelming. (Specifically, on a 10-point scale, the single men report an average of just over 1 “symptom,” and the married men report an average of just under 1.)
The Pew and Time magazine report generating all those headlines (mostly about how 39% of Americans think marriage is becoming obsolete) set out to look beyond just married people to other family members and family forms. One question participants were asked was this: