Have you been giving up the goods before the "traditional" third date rolls around? If so, then you're not alone.
A new study found that more than 25 percent of women are putting out within the first week of dating someone. So if you squeeze three dates into a week, then you're still on track; however, not many have the time or energy to go out on that many dates within a seven-day period. (See AskMen's "Women Are Easier Than Ever" for more details; the title should say it all.)
Whereas in the past men had to woo and pay for dinner after dinner to get some action, those days seem to be long gone. Men are doing very little to get the sexual gratification that decades ago would have cost them time and money. These days it's a completely different game all together. Researchers found that 30 percent of young men's relationships don't even involve an ounce of romance-no courting, no Sade, no candles, no standing outside of windows with boom boxes-just sex!
This shift is being blamed on several factors. For one, gender equality comes into play. With the balance between men and women evening out in the workplace and financially, women are behaving in ways that were once stereotypically male. There's also the invention of the Pill that has given women freedom and control over their bodies that didn't exist in the past. Blame is also being placed on Internet porn that is "desensitizing" us to what was once regarded as sacred between a husband and wife.
According to sociologist Mark Regnerus, from the University of Texas-Austin, an uneven ratio between men and women is also contributing to sex being given up so quickly. At U.S. colleges, 57 percent of the student body is women; more women than men leads to the female gender competing for "men's affections." And once they graduate, that imbalance continues, especially in a place like New York City where single women outnumber single men by more than 210,000-ranking NYC as the top city in the world for men to live satisfying lives. Such statistics are making men "quicker to have sex in our relationships these days, slower to commitment and just plain pickier." This, of course, also leads to easier women.
Explains Regnerus: "Every sex act is part of a 'pricing' of sex for subsequent relationships. If sex has been very easy to get for a particular young man for many years and over the course of multiple relationships, what would eventually prompt him to pay a lot for it in the future-that is committing to marry?"
Further proof of this ongoing pattern can be found in the fact that the number of married 25 to 34-year-olds has plummeted by an average of 1 percent each year during this past decade, with just 46 percent of those in that age bracket now married.
Regnerus also points out "women don't really need men and marriage- economically, socially and culturally-like they once did." While this may be true in some ways, it still doesn't explain when the concept of love got put on the back burner.
As women, we should be embracing gender equality and that yes, while we may not need men in many ways, that shouldn't discount love. If the female gender could only make a pact to somehow hold out when it comes to putting out, perhaps we can swing things in the other direction; perhaps we can take back power in the situation and procure everlasting, meaningful relationships.
While sex is healthy, fun and sometimes a necessary itch that needs to be scratched, sex without intimacy and love eventually falls short. As a society, we need to put more emphasis on what's important fundamentally, instead of superficially; we need to put love back on the table and not take it off until we've found meaning in it. If it means hours upon hours of watching or readingPride and Prejudice, then so be it. Love shouldn't be a thing of the past; it should never go out of style. Seriously, where is Mr. Darcy when you need him?
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