Like every father, Neil Clark Warren worried about whether each of his three daughters would marry the right guy. But not every father turns that concern into a billion-dollar matchmaking business.
As a clinical psychologist and theologian for nearly 40 years, Warren had counseled thousands of couples who couldn't get along. He was a front-row witness to what he calls the horror of divorce. Statistics painted a bleak picture for his girls.
"Half the people who get married in America are ending up divorced, and of those who stay together, half say they're not very happy," Warren notes. How could he help them beat the odds? Warren launched eHarmony on August 22, 2000. By December, 20,000 people had signed up.
So what is Warren's big dream? "I've often said that my dream is to get the divorce rate down to single digits. If we could ever do that, it would be the greatest single social revolution in the history of the human race."
What exactly do single people want?
They are dying for a deep sense of companionship and to feel really good about themselves. When you find someone who makes you feel good about yourself, you want to be around that person all the time!
What's the one essential quality to a successful relationship that most people overlook?
Honesty. I find singles are too forgiving of people who lie to them. They think they won't lie the next time. But liars tend to be liars.
What's the most important of your 29 criteria for compatibility?
Emotional health. No marriage can ever be stronger than the emotional health of the least healthy partner.
Do opposites attract?
I have been the greatest opponent of this because I believe so much in the importance of similarities. The truth is, opposites attract, then they attack.
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