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Doing Life Together

Doing Life Together

Singles and Sex: The Survey Says…

posted by Linda Mintle

According to an online survey of 5,481 singles, ages 21 and older, who are not in a relationship, conducted by Market Tools Inc. for Match.com (Margin of error plus/minus 1.32 percentage points), this is what singles are saying about their sexual behavior:

  • –42% would not date a virgin. This is really sad and a remarkable change through the decades. Consider the sexual baggage and potential STIs that are brought to relationships from multiple sex partners. And this is certainly not in line with God’s plan to wait for sex in marriage.
  • –47% of singles reported a “friends with benefits” relationship. One has to wonder how much media have impacted this casual view of sex. On most TV shows, it is almost expected that you hook up with someone while dating. And casual friendships that involve sex are viewed as  conveniences as long as they don’t hurt  friendships. Sex is reduced to a physical act versus an intimate act of marriage. Based on my conversations with singles, I am not convinced that anyone handles casual sex well.
  • –44% of women and 63% of men have had one-night stands. The temptation is great, especially when this is not viewed as sin.
  • –Almost one-third (28%) say they’ve had sex by the third date; almost half (46%) by the sixth date. Speaks to the expectation that casual sex is not frowned upon as it was in years past.

 

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What is disturbing about this survey is that we are seeing almost half of singles willing to hook up with dates and treat sex in a casual way. What isn’t talked about is the fall out emotionally, spiritually and relationally when sex is treated casually. The heartache of giving yourself to a person who doesn’t stay with you creates more of an impact than people lead you to believe. I’ve heard hundreds of stories from women and men who can’t shake the images of prior sexual behavior from their memories when they do get into a relationship they would like to go long term. The number of STIs continues to rise,  a permanent reminder of prior sexual relationships to those who marry other people.

 

Sexual relationships are not free and easy as we are led to believe. The consequences are rarely shown or discussed but often leave scars, wounds and feelings of shame that can only be dealt with through the healing power of a relationship with Christ. God’s prescription for sex in marriage is not some punitive measure to keep up from having fun, but a protection for our hearts. Any other message is simply a lie, but apparently more and more singles are buying the lies.

 

 

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Single Women Share What They Want From Single Men

posted by Linda Mintle

Ladies, it is your turn.

A singles survey of almost 5500 unattached adults conducted by MarketTools.com for Match.com sheds light on what singles look for in potential relationships. And yes, physical attraction still makes the list. I already blogged on what men look for in women. Now, let’s take a look at what women judge men on when considering a potential date.

The number 1 physical characteristic was the same as men: TEETH. A whopping 71% listed teeth. Obviously, that smile makes a difference!

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The rest of the characteristics ranked as follows:

#2 Grammar (61%)

#3 Clothes (58%)

#4 Hair (53%)

#5 Nails/hands (52%)

#6 Have/Not having tattoo (34%)

#7 Shoes (29%)

#8 The car he drives (24%)

#9 Accent (22%)

#10 Electronic devices carried (9%)

It is interesting how important grammar is to making a good impression. Also, self-care is an issue. Women are paying attention to grooming.

 

In terms of the relationship, the most important ranked as follows:

#1 Someone who treats me with respect (84%)

#2 Someone I can trust and confide in (77%)

#3Someone who has a sense of humor and can make me laugh (58%)

#4 Someone who shares the same values I do (47%)

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#5 Someone who is comfortable sharing his wants, needs and desires (46%)

Hmmm…only the women weighed in on values.

And what women voted as least important:

Someone who is eager to marry (6%)

Someone who eats similar foods (9%)

Someone who wants to have children and shares my political beliefs. (tied at 11%)

Someone who has a similar education level (12%)

Someone from the same ethnic background (14%)

 

 

Source: Online survey of 5,481 singles ages 21 and older who are not in a relationship, by Market Tools Inc. for Match.com. Margin of error plus/minus 1.32 percentage points.
Frank Pompa, USA TODAY

 

 

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Single Men Share What They Want From Single Women

posted by Linda Mintle

You’ve heard the saying, “Put your money where your mouth is?” Well if you are single, this idea may have some merit.

A singles survey of almost 5500 unattached adults conducted by MarketTools.com for Match.com sheds light on what singles look for in potential relationships. And yes, physical attraction still makes the list. But the specifics may surprise you.

Number one on the list of 10 things men judge women on: TEETH! When judging a potential date, men look at teeth. Biological anthropologist, Helen Fisher, thinks this could be because teeth represent health. Teeth care indicates hygiene and personal health habits. Although, I’d add a caution, teeth whitening can be deceptive!

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According to the survey, men ranked these physical characteristics in this order:

#3 (51%) Hair

#4 (45%) Clothes

#5  (40%) Have/Not Tattoo

#6 (37%) Nails and Hands

#8 (18%) Shoes

Two attractions had to do with how a woman speaks:  #2 was good grammar (55%); Accent ranked #7 (19%)

Finally, and more related to symbols of status were: The car a woman drives (#9 with 13%) and electronic devices carried (#10 with 9%).

 

In terms of the relationship, men ranked the most important as:

#1 Someone I can trust and confide in (63%)

#2 Someone who treats me with respect (57%)

#3 Someone who is physically attracted to me (40%)

#4 Someone who has a sense of humor and makes me laugh (37%)

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#5 Someone who is comfortable with her own sexuality (36%)

The least important:

Someone who is eager to marry (4%)

Someone who makes at least as much money (6%)

Someone who eats similar foods (7%)

Someone who has a similar educational level, has a successful career, wants to have children and shares political beliefs (4 way tie at 8%)

Someone who has the same ethnic background (9%).

 

Tomorrow, what single women look for in men.

 

Source: Online survey of 5,481 singles ages 21 and older who are not in a relationship, by Market Tools Inc. for Match.com. Margin of error plus/minus 1.32 percentage points.
Frank Pompa, USA TODAY

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Prime Time TV: The Gospel Hour(s) for Sexuality

posted by Linda Mintle

I was reviewing a large study on the sexual attitudes of singles and I was surprised by how much shift has occurred regarding sexuality.

And then I wasn’t surprised when I began to think about how media preach their nightly brand of  sexuality.

In almost every case (I am struggling to find one story line of conservative sexual values not mocked), the person who doesn’t have sex outside of  marriage is made to look like a freak. The message- sexual appetite must be fed.

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Joseph saying NO to Potipher’s wife would not make prime time. The TV gospel hour does not preach fleeing from sexual temptation.

Grey’s Anatomy, like most of prime time television, is one of those shows promoting the gospel of open sexuality. Casual sex is the norm. The person who resists is weird, an outsider and neurotic.

In Grey’s, one of the married couples couldn’t be themselves in marriage, so they divorced and are now having fantastic sex all the time because they are free of the confines of marriage. The sermon is very clear–marriage undermines who you are and sex is better outside of it.

And even though homosexuality remains a consistently small  percentage of our population, gay and lesbian story lines dominate most of prime time. This is purposeful. The writers use their bully pulpits to promote tolerance  and condemn anyone who thinks differently, even if that thinking is based on a moral code. You will not see a moral position against homosexuality ever presented with love or tolerance–a hypocrisy that cannot be discussed without accusation and attack.

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Another story line featured a transgendered teen couple. We had much dialogue from the teen’s perspective of being trapped in the wrong body. The dialogue was compassionate and empathetic towards the teen. The father of the 18-year-old girl who is about to have her breasts removed in order to begin her journey towards becoming a man, enters the hospital and is portrayed as unloving, intolerant and misguided. When he questions the choice of his still developing daughter, all the sympathy goes to the loving and supportive transgendered friend, who tries to get the dad to accept his daughter’s decision to change her gender. The father asks what the rush is to change so quickly but is rebuffed for that question, even though it is a realistic question, and one any father would ask an 18-year-old considering reconstructive surgery. But of course, he is just misguided and lacks compassion. The father leaves the hospital, unable to show love because he didn’t agree with the decision. He abandons his daughter (son) at his time of need. Again, tolerance  trumps and makes a realistic conversation impossible. If you oppose the change for any reason, you don’t love your child.

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The single Christian on the show gave in to her sexual appetites long ago, had passionate sex often until the guilt became too great. Her sexual partner moved on to an intern. Last night, she questioned whether anyone goes out on a real date and allows romance to blossom. The other doctors looked at her like she was from another planet and made no comment. No one has questioned sex in an uncommitted relationship. And of course, none of the sexually active doctors ever contract an STI or have emotional fall out from casual sex.

I could go on, but you get the idea.

I long for the day when writers on these shows write characters who have a different view of casual sex without being portrayed as freaks. Or maybe, in the name of tolerance, a different viewpoint could be presented in a loving way (that would be real tolerance!). Or maybe a character could actually say NO to casual sex and be a hero at least once.

In the meantime, television continues to push its brand of sexuality. They have an audience and they use the pulpit!

When you preach something long enough and often enough, people begin to believe. That’s a power of media.

Is it any wonder our attitudes towards sexuality are changing?

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