Wuv, twue wuv

By By Eric Vogeler

By Eric Vogeler

“I’m 6 feet tall, 200 pounds of rippling muscle, blessed with engaging blue eyes, sandy blond hair and a rapier wit. I’m single, sensitive and love to have fun. My interests include composing music and poetry, playing with children, taking long walks on the beach and getting caught in the rain. I’m looking for Miss Right, and she could be you!”

-Eric Vogeler

“Single, Sensitive, Fun”

Ads like the one above are so commonplace in our society that they’re clichd to the point of hilarity-yet they continue to permeate our society in newspapers, television and the Internet.

Internet dating services have become a multi-million dollar industry and claim “guaranteed results.” eHarmony.com recently celebrated its fifth anniversary with a frozen slice of wedding cake and five-figure employee bonuses.

No matter how unconventional, irrational or scary the prospect of Internet dating is, one must admit that it’s working for an ever growing demographic.

I consider myself somewhat of an authority on the subject: I’ve introduced five couples to each other in the past two years who are now married or engaged. While my track record isn’t as sterling as eHarmony.com’s, I’ve found myself becoming more and more an advocate for the benefits of dating for marriage.

Most of us are looking for that special “one.” Even those who claim they aren’t, really are. The probability of finding that “one” in the six billion-plus population of the world seems nearly impossible, but every year more than 200,000 American couples take the plunge, tie the knot or yell “Mazel tov” at the top of their lungs.

To all those anti-marriage activists I know on campus saying, “Why should I settle down? There’s so much to live for!” -well, that’s dangerous thinking. Among those sections of our population where marriage rates are lowest, we also see the lowest quality of life: higher rates of poverty, disease, depression, suicide and homicide.

A good marriage is a great thing! According to one recent study by Gregory Acs and Sandi Nelson of the Urban Institute, “Married couples enjoy an advantage in emotional health over cohabiting couples. Not only may this emotional health contribute to better parent-child interactions in married-couple families, but it may also allow married men and women to be more productive at work, increasing their material well-being.”

The authors go on to cite statistics showing that married women are less likely to be abused or sexually assaulted. Married women are more likely to attain financial security, to have a post-high school education, work part- or full-time and enjoy better mental, physical, and emotional health. The statistics are similar for married men.

The benefits of marriage go far beyond just the couple involved. Children of married parents have lower rates of depression and abuse. They tend to be more educated and motivated. They enjoy better health and financial circumstances than their peers.

Seems that settling down is really the best way to live for something.

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