If you find yourself looking for love online, you might just fall for someone outside of your zip code. So does distance really make the heart grow fonder? Online dating site FirstMet.com analyzed over 500,000 responses to the questions, “Would you have a long distance relationship?” and “Would you relocate for a partner?” to find out.
According to the data, men are 38% more likely than women to try a long distance relationship and 56% more likely than women to relocate for a partner.
While it’s difficult to pin point the exact reason men prefer long distance dating over women, we reached out to dating experts Laurel House and Kerri Zane to help explain the discrepancy between the sexes.
“Women tend to be more needy and enjoy more in-person attention during the first stages of a relationship, while men often use distance as an excuse to have more freedom and not feel “tied down,”” said Laurel House. “Once the relationship gets serious; however, the conversation needs to move towards someone moving to the same location as it’s difficult to sustain a healthy relationship when experiencing a vacation-style relationship.
“Vacation relationships” are what House refers to as those that exist primarily on weekends. They are fun and free and don’t require you to see the in-betweens, the daily life, or the minutia. They basically allow you to avoid digging in and getting truly vulnerable, which could be part of the appeal to men.
Since 69% of FirstMet.com’s female members in the US are over 40 years old, Zane believes kids could play a significant role in the differing viewpoints as well. “When you feel that you’ve put your kids through a lot of trauma, such as a divorce, uprooting them from familiar surroundings, school and friends is not really viable option,” she said.
Long distance relationships might not be for everyone, but it is possible to execute them strategically and ask the right questions to dig deep, House says. “Video Skype is a great way to create that environment of safety and trust where you can truly be vulnerable and get to know each other on a substantive level.”
Plus there are plenty of tips and tricks on FirstMet.com to help you along the way.