September 10, 2017

September 10, 2017

How to Fix the Person You Love

It’s hard to make our spouses feel valued and accepted while pushing them to be the best they can be.

March 1, 2016

March 1, 2016

Dating in a Digital World

Understanding the science of online dating can turn a frustrating experience into a fruitful mission.
 

April 9, 2015

April 9, 2015

Explaining Jeb Bush's "Hispanic" Error

Jeb Bush certainly knows that he is not Hispanic. But his marriage may make it just a bit more difficult for him — especially if he’s distracted or acting quickly — to hold that fact in mind.

February 6, 2015

February 6, 2015

In Defense of Tinder

Is the smartphone revolution sullying the online dating world? Critics complain that Tinder is a hookup app, a good way to pursue a one-night stand but a lousy way to start a serious relationship. But this is a false dichotomy. As a psychological researcher who studies online dating, I believe that Tinder’s approach is terrific for pursuing casual sex and for meeting a serious relationship partner.

June 27, 2014

June 27, 2014

The Trauma of Parenthood

[M]any women and men experience significant psychological distress in response to becoming a parent and that much of this distress isn’t caused by a hormonal epiphenomenon of the birth process. It is driven instead in large measure by the objectively bleak circumstances new parents often face. That you love your child is not always sufficient to counteract this reality. Fortunately, over the past few years, the ideology of parenting has been challenged by social scientists, who have repeatedly demonstrated a profound disconnect between parenting dogma and the actual experience of parenthood.

February 14, 2014

February 14, 2014

The All-or-Nothing Marriage

Over the past year I immersed myself in the scholarly literature on marriage: not just the psychological studies but also work from sociologists, economists and historians. Perhaps the most striking thing I learned is that the answer to whether today’s marriages are better or worse is “both”: The average marriage today is weaker than the average marriage of yore, in terms of both satisfaction and divorce rate, but the best marriages today are much stronger, in terms of both satisfaction and personal well-being, than the best marriages of yore.

November 1, 2013

November 1, 2013

Wrath: How Intimacy Can Breed Violence

Intimacy spawns strong emotions, which can erupt in violence when self-control fails.

May 10, 2013

May 10, 2013

When Helping Hurts

American parents are more involved in our children’s lives than ever: we schedule play dates, assist with homework and even choose college courses. We know that all of this assistance has costs — depleted bank balances, constricted social lives — but we endure them happily, believing we are doing what is best for our children. What if, however, the costs included harming our children?

February 8, 2013

February 8, 2013

Dear Valentine, I Hate It When You...

Have you decided what to get for your valentine this year? You could try something classic, like chocolates. Or something blingy, like earrings. Or sexy, like lingerie. But if you really want to improve your relationship, you should give your loved one an i.o.u. Find a nice piece of stationery, and in your most graceful lettering, assert: “I promise to write about our next three fights as though I were a neutral observer.” Then, doodle a heart on the page, stick it in a pretty envelope and give it to that special someone over dinner.

September 1, 2012

September 1, 2012

How to Find Love in a Digital World

Romantic relationships can begin anywhere. When Cupid's arrow strikes, you might be at church or at school, playing chess or softball, flirting with a friend of a friend at a party or minding your own business on the train. Sometimes, however, Cupid goes on vacation, or takes a long nap, or kicks back for a marathon of Lifetime original movies. Instead of waiting for the capricious arrow slinger to get back to work, people are increasingly joining online-dating sites to assert some control over their romantic lives.

February 11, 2012

February 11, 2012

The Dubious Science of Online Dating

For a fee, many dating sites will collect data about you, crunch the numbers and match you with someone who, as eHarmony puts it, has been “prescreened for deep compatibility with you across 29 dimensions.” Sites like Chemistry, PerfectMatch and GenePartner make similar scientific-sounding claims. But can a mathematical formula really identify pairs of singles who are especially likely to have a successful romantic relationship?