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I just listened to a fascinating podcast on This Week in Mormons with non-Mormon author Jon Birger talking about his book Date-onomics. The book is basically about demographic disparities of college educated men and women and how it is impacting the dating/marriage scene. Though the book is not LDS focused, there is a chapter about Mormons and Jews and the marriage crisis each are encountering. While I think calling it a marriage crisis is a bit of an overstatement, it is an interesting phenomena happening through out the USA and Mormons are experiencing the same issues.

Basically the premise is that most educated men and women marry each other. There isn't generally a lot of crossover between the college educated and the not. Since there are more college educated females than men ( a trend that continues to grow) there is a lack of men for the women to marry which leads to women being in greater competition for the scarcer resource of college educated men. This leads to a less monogamous dating lifestyle and one that is more rife with casual hook-ups.

There were a couple of observations he made that I thought were interesting but I'd like to throw them out for discussion to see if others find them valid.

1- When adding the requirements of college-educated and Mormon, the demographic disparity is more stark because more men are leaving the church during late teens and early adulthood. While this is common amongst many religions it is proposed that this is more prevalent in LDS because young men are required to choose early on about serving a mission, and if they don't, they are tainted in the eyes of the culture. When they feel the alienation or "otherness" they are more apt to leave.

2- Strategically it would be better for women to marry young while the pool of men is larger. It's compared to musical chairs. At the beginning if there are 15 men to every 20 women the woman has a 3/4 chance of finding a partner. Once five couples marry, the odds are now 10/15 or 2/3rds chance. Once another five couples marry there is now 5/10 or 1/2 chance. When 4 more couples marry, it leaves 6 women to 1 man or a 17% chance of finding a spouse. Obviously there are occurrences of people rejoining the dating pool so there is always hope. But does it seem reasonable as a strategy for Mormon, college-educated women to marry earlier, and not put off relationships for additional schooling or career when their chances continue to diminish?

http://thisweekinmormons.com/2017/08/episode-374-date-onomics-jon-birger/

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3 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

As a single college educated guy in his 30s the disparity is real but the quality of the women in that dating range is, to put it kindly, mediocre. Then again they probably say the same thing about me.

What criteria are you using to define mediocre?

I have a sister who is in her late 30's. Advanced degree, Good job, home, etc. Her mid-singles ward barely had men with jobs and drivers licenses, let alone degrees and a solid life plan. Not to say you're in that boat, but from my limited perspective it truly seems like women have a harder time finding qualified men.

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2 minutes ago, HappyJackWagon said:

What criteria are you using to define mediocre?

I have a sister who is in her late 30's. Advanced degree, Good job, home, etc. Her mid-singles ward barely had men with jobs and drivers licenses, let alone degrees and a solid life plan. Not to say you're in that boat, but from my limited perspective it truly seems like women have a harder time finding qualified men.

Maybe you could hook them up! ;)

 

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I read the transcript and there are few places to be careful. I think the evidence is that most of the plastic surgery are people coming to Utah from out of state for instance. While back in the day I'd definitely been in singles wards where people had plastic surgery I think that's grossly exaggerated. (And in the cases I was familiar with they were getting it while quite young (early 20's) and not because they were having trouble finding a man.

Happy Jack, I think that's true although I also suspect that if she told you most men were unemployed she's probably exaggerating.

My own experience having gotten married at 35 is that people get too set in their ways and there's just not a lot of attraction towards people of the opposite sex in ones ward. Yet the places to meet people outside of a church environment are limited. There's dating websites, but those often suck for various reasons. That's not to deny more major issues such as career or so forth. But I also think that expectations are slightly out of sync. Further often the people still single just lack good dating skills and confidence and then blame issues on things external to themselves. I'll fully admit I did that when in my late 20's -- with the wisdom of hindsight I think it was me who was ultimately to blame. Once I went out of my comfort zone I found my dating was far more successful. I just had to be willing to put up with all the crap that I definitely don't miss about dating.

Edited by clarkgoble
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13 minutes ago, HappyJackWagon said:

What criteria are you using to define mediocre?

I have a sister who is in her late 30's. Advanced degree, Good job, home, etc. Her mid-singles ward barely had men with jobs and drivers licenses, let alone degrees and a solid life plan. Not to say you're in that boat, but from my limited perspective it truly seems like women have a harder time finding qualified men.

I am in my later 30's but where I live there are no women!!!!!!!!!!!! well, here are two women around my age kind of, one is supposedly dying but she's been dying now for ten years and the other is really mean

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20 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

One wise woman in my mid-singles group suggested we invite couples in the stake with marital problems to visit mid-singles activities so they know what they have to come back to. She suggested it would save a lot of marriages.

Great idea :) 

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ClarkGoble- Happy Jack, I think that's true although I also suspect that if she told you most men were unemployed she's probably exaggerating.

It's probably different in Utah. The mid-singles ward around here is rough. It sounds more like what Duncan describes. I'm not kidding when I say that 3/4 of the men live at home, don't have a job, don't have a license, or are special needs members. I know this ward and it scares me.

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I am in my later 30's but where I live there are no women!!!!!!!!!!!! well, here are two women around my age kind of, one is supposedly dying but she's been dying now for ten years and the other is really mean

Ha, ha. That's rough, man.

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52 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

As a single college educated guy in his 30s the disparity is real but the quality of the women in that dating range is, to put it kindly, mediocre. Then again they probably say the same thing about me.

Perhaps if you spent less time on this board and got out of your parents basement...you would be married.  The odds are in your favor and with 7 women to choose from for every male... go get em Nehor

Just to be fair I want to again share a photo of myself Related image

Edited by Johnnie Cake
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16 minutes ago, HappyJackWagon said:

It's probably different in Utah. The mid-singles ward around here is rough. It sounds more like what Duncan describes. I'm not kidding when I say that 3/4 of the men live at home, don't have a job, don't have a license, or are special needs members. I know this ward and it scares me.

Wow. Doesn't sound like a ward I'd want to belong to. Back in my single days there definitely were a few wards that I didn't want to attend. When picking an apartment the ward was always a big deal. I typically would attend before moving. There were wards I really liked but simply didn't want to date anyone from them. Interestingly I met my wife after I'd got the single ward boot but my roommates were in her ward. I didn't like that singles ward at all, but it worked out well I guess.

Edited by clarkgoble
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51 minutes ago, ttribe said:

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51 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

Preaching to the choir here. I would trust my parents to pick a good match. :)


Or God.
A little revelation here and there is always a good thing.  I'm rather of the opinion that we have no idea what would be best for us in an eternal partner so rather than listing all the traits we think we want and dismissing those we consider lacking we do nothing but pray for God to bring the right person into our lives.
Job or no job, education or no education, physical appearance unimportant, sense of humor, puts the toilet seat down...whatever is on the list can be set aside.
Only a testimony should be a must.  Let God arrange everything else.

Hey, God's intervention has worked for my wife and I so far.  ;)   Of course it helps that she's perfect and has a testimony or I'd be out on my ear I think...

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29 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

 


Or God.
A little revelation here and there is always a good thing.  I'm rather of the opinion that we have no idea what would be best for us in an eternal partner so rather than listing all the traits we think we want and dismissing those we consider lacking we do nothing but pray for God to bring the right person into our lives.
Job or no job, education or no education, physical appearance unimportant, sense of humor, puts the toilet seat down...whatever is on the list can be set aside.
Only a testimony should be a must.  Let God arrange everything else.

Hey, God's intervention has worked for my wife and I so far.  ;)   Of course it helps that she's perfect and has a testimony or I'd be out on my ear I think...

That's it, huh?  You might be surprised how dangerous this can be.

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As long as he was willing to keep learning, I would be willing to marry less educated.  My bigger concern would be with someone who wasn't trying anymore, either in education, health or anything...

Edited by Calm
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As a mom, I worry less about my kids after they are married. I don't think it is bad to marry young if you meet the right person and I see no reason a girl can not finish her education if she gets married. Honestly, I would rather my daughter have a great marriage over a great career.  But, I want them to be educated and if they must work, be well compensated.

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2 hours ago, The Nehor said:

As a single college educated guy in his 30s the disparity is real but the quality of the women in that dating range is, to put it kindly, mediocre. Then again they probably say the same thing about me.

2 hours ago, HappyJackWagon said:

What criteria are you using to define mediocre?

I have a sister who is in her late 30's. Advanced degree, Good job, home, etc. Her mid-singles ward barely had men with jobs and drivers licenses, let alone degrees and a solid life plan. Not to say you're in that boat, but from my limited perspective it truly seems like women have a harder time finding qualified men.

Blind date?

Nehor, no stress, the women will be fighting over you. 

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46 minutes ago, ttribe said:

That's it, huh?  You might be surprised how dangerous this can be.

No, only a testimony AND the revelation from God that it's right.

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2 hours ago, Johnnie Cake said:

Perhaps if you spent less time on this board and got out of your parents basement...you would be married.  The odds are in your favor and with 7 women to choose from for every male... go get em Nehor

Just to be fair I want to again share a photo of myself Related image

I own a three bedroom house I will have paid off in five years if all goes well.

And wow, I didn't expect to find another of the mid-singles from my stake here. You may want to upgrade that CRT monitor there next time you get your allowance.

Edited by The Nehor
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1 hour ago, clarkgoble said:

Wow. Doesn't sound like a ward I'd want to belong to. Back in my single days there definitely were a few wards that I didn't want to attend. When picking an apartment the ward was always a big deal. I typically would attend before moving. There were wards I really liked but simply didn't want to date anyone from them. Interestingly I met my wife after I'd got the single ward boot but my roommates were in her ward. I didn't like that singles ward at all, but it worked out well I guess.

Singles Wards are not always bad. Mid-Singles groups and their rare wards almost always are.

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1 hour ago, JLHPROF said:

 


Or God.
A little revelation here and there is always a good thing.  I'm rather of the opinion that we have no idea what would be best for us in an eternal partner so rather than listing all the traits we think we want and dismissing those we consider lacking we do nothing but pray for God to bring the right person into our lives.
Job or no job, education or no education, physical appearance unimportant, sense of humor, puts the toilet seat down...whatever is on the list can be set aside.
Only a testimony should be a must.  Let God arrange everything else.

Hey, God's intervention has worked for my wife and I so far.  ;)   Of course it helps that she's perfect and has a testimony or I'd be out on my ear I think...

If God wants to pick someone out for me he is welcome to do so. So far he has demurred.

A fortune cookie once told me that "True love is waiting for you right in front of your eyes." Looked up to see my best friend from work. Not sure if I should follow that counsel at least until the Church allows gay temple marriages.

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32 minutes ago, pogi said:

Nehor, no stress, the women will be fighting over you. 

They have not so far. I have met many women I could see myself in a relationship with and many who could see themselves in a relationship with me but the Venn diagram does not seem to have a lot of overlap lately.

After two failed engagements and multiple other relationships when I was younger maybe it just is not going to happen and I am okay with that if that ends up being the case. Not happy about it, but okay with it.

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38 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

No, only a testimony AND the revelation from God that it's right.

Which, of course, can be faked/influenced/manipulated, etc.  So, then we have the little BYU freshman co-ed who dates an RM once, on the second date he tells her that he's prayed about it and knows they are to get married. She prays and feels *good* about it, but mostly because he's an RM and must know how to listen to the Spirit, plus it's all new and he seems nice. So 6 months later they are married.  On their wedding night, she discovers he's an abusive monster.  Tell me that hasn't happened many times over and I'll tell you that you have your head in the sand.

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