Recently I saw a news article on the topic of men falling in love. I went to find the original source and couldn’t find anything from the past couple of weeks, but I did find this one from last summer. Why it took Yahoo 9 months to run something similar is beyond me. Basically, a woman, Elizabeth Noble, wanted to write a novel about reunited lovers and did some research. What she found was that:
1. Men fall in love more quickly than women. “Nearly a quarter said they believed in love at first sight and knew whether a girl was ‘the one’ within seconds.”
2. Men fall in love more often than women. Women tend to have just one true love and the average British man falls in love three times.
3. Men are more likely to pine after their first love.
4. Men tend to say “I love you” first.
There are more observations that the author makes, but these are the ones that stand out for me as a romance writer. I think for the most part, numbers 1, 2, and 4 go hand-in-hand. If you’re quick to fall in love, you’re more likely to say it and do it more often.
I wonder why it is, though, that it always seems to be that the woman is painted as the romantic. According to the research, women are more likely to take their time falling in love and they seek advice from friends and family. I’ve talked about my belief (or lack of) in love at first sight here.
I think that because men are visual creatures and are more likely to equate physical love with emotional love, they are then more likely to turn insta-lust into love. I have no basis for this, other than my own experiences with men I know. So, if there are men out there, please chime in.
I wonder if what they think is love, really is. Of course, there’s no way to measure love, but when I look back at the one guy I thought I loved, it doesn’t compare to the love I have with my husband. Does that make sense?
Men are do-ers not thinkers; therefore, if they believe they’re in love, they’re going to say it. I can believe that men would say “I love you first,” especially because I think a lot of women think that if they say it too early, they’ll scare the man off or they’ll be seen as clingy.
Number 3 is the one observation that really makes the most sense for me. I believe this and I think it’s the reason why reunited lovers stories sell so well. I think men do have a hard time really letting go of that first love. Because of that, if at some point that first love re-enters a man’s life, he’d definitely consider another chance, even if she broke his heart the first time around. In most reunited lovers stories the man has never truly gotten over the woman. Sure he’s had sex with plenty of women, but no serious relationships. Sometimes this holds true for the woman as well, but I think it’s almost expected for the hero.
I know for me, now that I’ve read this research, I’m going to pay closer attention to the books I read to see if they reflect this. Off the top of my head, I couldn’t guess, but now I’m going to check it out.
What’s your experience? Do men fall in love quicker than women? If so, why is it almost always portrayed as the woman falling fast?