According to a new study, women are much more likely than men to have regrets about their romantic lives. Maybe because we're constantly judged based on them?
The Chicago Sun-Times reports on the study by Neil Roese, a marketing professor at Northwestern. Roese asked 370 people, aged 20 to 80, to name their biggest regrets. Forty-four percent mentioned romantic issues — things like "the one that got away, a missed opportunity or someone you knew in college [with whom] it didn't quite work out" — while only 19% of men did. Men were more likely to list regrets related to work.
This news isn't really all that surprising. Talk of the "mancession" and female breadwinners aside, there's still a big gender divide when it comes to gauging success in America: a guy has made it if he has a great career, a woman if she has a great husband. This has little to do with people's individual aspirations, and plenty of people break out of these expected roles, but the idea that a man's success happens at work and a woman's at the altar persists. On top of this, women get the message — from magazines, from dating guides, from all over the internet — that if they aren't married, it's probably because they have made or are making some terrible mistake. Love and its loss may be unpredictable, but you wouldn't know that from the barrage of tips and tricks women get to "help" them find The One. And if they haven't found Him (in the universe of dating advice, it's almost never Her), it's no surprise they feel regret — after all, they must have done something wrong.
There's one interesting wrinkle in Roese's data, though. While single women were more likely than attached ones to have regrets about their love lives, one popular regret was "not divorcing sooner." Guess getting married doesn't actually solve all your problems.
Study: Regrets? Women Have A Few, Particularly In Romance [Chicago Sun-Times]
Report: More Women Have Romantic Regrets [ABC]
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