Does Meeting Online Increase the Probability of Divorce?

onlinedatingSo I’ve seen an article floating around Facebook and the internet the last couple of days. It’s entitled:


“Online Dating Leads to More Breakups than Meeting in Real Life”

An academic conducted a study using a large, nationally representative sample of couples that were followed for a couple of years. They assesses the participants initially, then followed them up after 1 year and again at 2 years. And one of the factors they looked for is whether the couples were still together. In a nutshell, the study found that couples who’d met online were more likely to split up, or if married, get divorced.

You can understand why such a headline would make national news. The phenomenon of online dating is a social and economic force in our culture, and people are still wanting to know if it works. Is online dating a viable way to meet a partner or spouse, or not? read more…

Ray Rice and the Misunderstanding of Abusive Relationships

16rayrice-master675If you watch the news, and certainly if you follow American football, you’ve probably heard about Ray Rice, the (former) Baltimore Raven who hit his wife hard enough to render her unconscious. The entire thing was caught on video, and it brought up a lot of issues in the media regarding domestic violence, NFL players getting away with illegal behaviors, etc. I watched the video many times. It ain’t pretty.

We could go on and on about Rice, the NFL, and the rest, but I want to address an issue that came up, and one that comes up over and over again whenever domestic violence (DV) makes the news:

Why does she stay?

It seems Rice’s wife was only his fiancee when this videotaped incident happened, and she still married him. Many people brought this up, and the subtext is always that no matter what he does or did, she chooses to be with him and thus is culpable. I’ve heard some version of this time and time again with abuse and DV: he hits her… but she chooses to stay. Or, in some cases, she hits him, but he chooses to stay. And it’s at that point that people stop caring. read more…

What is Introversion, and Why is it Important in Dating?


From a good FastCompany article

Four years ago, I wrote a blog entitled “Are You an Attractive Introvert?” I was surprised even then–when far fewer people read this blog–how much interest the article generated. But since then, and especially this year, the article has gone viral and generated a record number of page views and comments. The truth is, dating is a different ballgame for introverts… and it’s a really different ballgame for Attractive Introverts (AIs).

The idea of introversion has gained much traction in the media, probably due heavily to Susan Cain’s book Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking. I ruefully admit the book bored me enough to give up on it, but that’s more about my personal preferences and does not take away from the value and impact of the book for so many. (As it happens, I just downloaded it to give it another whirl).

Now, there are articles about introversion everywhere. The interesting thing about this explosion of info about introversion is that there are many different opinions as to what it is. So, I want to offer a brief overview of what introversion is.  read more…

Zoosk Allows Online Daters to Prove Their Authenticity

CatfishTheTVShowFor those of you who are dating online — and I know there are many of you — you probably know how it feels when you meet a potential date in person and they don’t quite look like the picture. Often they are:

  • Older in person (i.e. they posted an old photo)
  • Heavier in person (they posted a photo from when they were thinner)
  • Less attractive in person (they posted a photo that’s over-glamorized or otherwise not a realistic portrayal of them)

I know. It gets old, dealing with these deceptive people. Time and time again I encourage people to be honest in their pics and profiles. They’re going to find out the truth anyway! And when they do, they will only see you as, at best, insecure about yourself, and at worst, delusional. I say, have some damned pride in yourself and accept that you aren’t perfect. But, alas, not everyone listens to my sage advice. read more…

Daughters, Dating, and the Power of Dad


As most of you read last month, I attended a dating-related event in which one of the panelists stated that “most men are douchebags.” He said this twice: once before the event started, and again to the audience during the event. You know how I feel about this.

When people say things like this, sometimes it’s just hyperbole to make a point or to get people to listen. But more often it reflects the person’s true belief systems. This particular man owns a lot of bars and has likely spent a considerable amount of time in them, watching the kind of behavior that doesn’t make men (or women, for that matter) seem especially admirable.

But the interesting thing is that he has 3 daughters who are now old enough to date. He’s concerned about them. This was his justification for his advice and beliefs, and it was the justification used by a friend of his when someone criticized his douchebag statement.

We’ve all heard the jokes about fathers holding shotguns and scaring men who court their daughters. They’re funny. Men can relate to them, especially if they too have daughters. No man wants to see his little girl get hurt or taken advantage of by a… douchebag. And we can respect a man who looks out for his girls, right?

BUT… is this the way to go about it? read more…

OkCupid Admits to “Experimenting on Human Beings”


From OkTrends blog. This shows that attempting to rate looks and personality separately was a waste of time, as people don’t differentiate between the two on the site.

After 3 years of nothing but the sound of crickets, OkCupid has finally posted something on their OkTrends blog. And this time, it was to admit that they “experiment on human beings.” In other words, they’ve used the huge cache of data (and subjects) available to them, manipulated their users’ profile data, and utilized their considerable analytic prowess to bring us yet more interesting information about how people behave when dating online.

The new blog article is called, of course, “We Experiment on Human Beings!”


Right or Wrong?

Some people find OkCupid’s experimentation merely interesting. Others are outraged. Their experimentation even made major news, including a segment on Good Morning America. And it was somewhat similar to the public finding out that Facebook did some “experiments” of its own on the power of “emotional contagion,” where the social media site manipulated users’ feeds to see how they would react. Even a Senator asked the Federal Trade Commission to look into what Facebook did, mostly to address the issue of privacy and what these social networking sites should be getting away with.

read more…

Christie Hartman, PhD


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