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Partner attractiveness has a corrosive effect on relationship stability.
Those rated as more attractive in high school yearbooks were married for shorter durations & more likely to divorce.
Across four studies, we examined the relational repercussions of physical attractiveness (PA). Study 1 (n = 238) found that those rated as more attractive in high school yearbooks were married for shorter durations and more likely to divorce. Study 2 (n = 130) replicated these effects using a different sample (high-profile celebrities). Study 3 (n = 134) examined the link between PA and the derogation of attractive alternatives, a relationship maintenance strategy. Study 4 (n = 156) experimentally manipulated perceived PA and examined its relation with both derogation of attractive alternatives and current relationship satisfaction. PA predicted likelihood of relationship dissolution and decreased derogation of attractive alternatives. Furthermore, PA predicted greater vulnerability to relationship threats—in this case, relationship alternatives—resulting from poor relationship satisfaction.
Shorter version: Options = Instability.
This particular study found no sex differences, but other similar research has found sex differences in attractiveness and relationship stability.
Think of the relationship permutations this way:
Man with options + woman with fewer options = man with peace of mind and wandering eye + happy but anxious woman + lovingly prepared home-cooked meals.
Woman with options + man with fewer options = unhappy woman with wandering eye + happy but anxious man + microwaved dinners.
Man with options + woman with options = stable relationship. Both are happy and infidelity or rupture risks are minimized.
Man with few options + woman with few options = stable relationship. Both are unhappy yet infidelity or rupture risks are still minimized.
A recent study found that relationship length is partly a function of the attractiveness of the woman’s face.
Generally, relationships in which the man has more options than the woman are less likely to rupture than relationships with the inverse dynamic. There are a few reasons for this discrepancy, but the primary reason is that men, especially HSMV men, are natural “harem builders” and are by wont of their male sex less interested in blowing up a marriage if they have a side piece for fun and relaxation. Men can more easily than women compartmentalize multiple concurrent relationships, and this includes outside flings pursued from within marital confines.
Cheating women, in contrast, have psychological and emotional resistance to maintaining their marital facade when they are fucking around on their husbands or boyfriends. A cheating wife will be more likely to initiate divorce than will a cheating husband, and ironically more likely to do so than the faithful wife of a cheating husband. This is the nature of women influencing our rationalized principles.
The claim that relationships/marriages are more stable when the man has more options than the woman is proven undeniably true simply by dint of the fact that 70% of divorces are initiated by women. Cheating husbands often don’t initiate divorce because, well, two women in the rotation beats one woman on repeat play.
Naturally, given the lop-sided divorce initiation stats, one may wonder if there are more women today than in the past who have, or feel they have, increased sexual market options. Certainly the bulging (heh) obesity epidemic can’t be contributing to American women feeling more full of themselves, but the increasing infantilization and effeminacy of America’s beta boys can certainly convince women to stop and ponder if they have settled too hastily or downwardly.