“By the time you swear you’re his, shivering and sighing, and he vows his passion is infinite, undying – Lady, make note of this: One of you is lying.” (Dorothy Parker).
Men get the bum rap when it comes to commitment. The media has turned their relationship phobic tendencies into a running joke, where men will all but spontaneously combust if a woman mentions that dreaded C word. Our data from Queendom for the Fear of Relationship Commitment Test will beg to differ, however – at least slightly.
Our study reveals that most people seem to be reasonably ready to commit to a relationship, with perhaps some slight misgivings. Common commitment issues found in our study were a fear of getting hurt and wanting to keep one’s options open, while common personal issues included a fear of not living up to a partner’s expectations, difficulty trusting a partner, and fear that a partner will leave for someone better. When comparing men and women however, men were actually slightly more likely to be ready to commit (score of 70 vs. 68, on a scale from 0 to 100). The slight gap, it seems, relates to women’s tendency to have more personal issues holding them back.
Interestingly, when adding age to the mix, our data reveals that age is not a determinant when it came to willingness to commit for men. Women show a clear pattern, with willingness to commit increasing with age – but when we looked at the data for men, it was scattered at best. There was no clear pattern.
Willingness to commit also, although not surprisingly, had an impact on relationship satisfaction. Our study results show that those who are not satisfied with their relationship score lowest on devotion to their partner (score of 62 vs. 80 for the satisfied group), were less likely to view their relationship as stable and long-term (score of 58 vs. 82 for the satisfied group), and more likely to have commitment issues (score of 41 vs. 22 for the satisfied group) and personal issues (score of 57 vs. 40 for the satisfied group) holding them back. Those who are single also followed the same pattern.
Hesitation isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Commitment is a major step that can’t be taken without forethought, and our data shows this. In fact, one third of our test-taking population is fearful that with the current divorce rate, they’ll be adding to those statistics if they take that commitment plunge. Here’s my caveat though: if there are personal issues involved, like fear, distrust, and low self-esteem, it’s more likely that a person would be hesitant, and this is when we recommend seeking professional help. Personally, I never saw Runaway Bride with Julia Roberts, but I can assume there were some issues there that she needed to work through.
Some precaution and personal reflection must be undertaken before making a commitment to someone until “death do you part.” When your heart and mind are fully committed to something, whether it’s a relationship, career choice, or anything else, wonderful things happen.
Here are a few other interesting tidbits from our study. Thankfully, on a more positive and happy note:
- 34% said that they wouldn’t change anything about their partner.
- 78% accept that they will occasionally have to sacrifice their own needs/dreams when in a committed relationship.
- 83% look forward to seeing what the future holds for them and their partner.
- 89% said that they are willing to do everything they can to support their partner.
- 89% said that making sure their partner is happy is of primary importance.
What’s your opinion on commitment? Share your comments below!
Join me for next week’s discussion on hostility!