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14th Jul 2019

New study reveals some surprising details about how most couples meet

Rory Cashin

Pulling with my Parents

One particular way couples meet has taken a huge dip lately.

A new study from Stanford University has revealed how most couples meet, and showed the vast differences in how today’s couples meet, compared to those of the recent past.

The study was focused exclusively on heterosexual couples (we’ll get to same-sex couples in a moment), but the results from the study show that before 1995, 0% of couples reported to have met online, but as of the 2019 study, that number was now almost 40%.

This has replaced what had essentially been the most popular form of meeting potential partners – through a friend – which had maintained a hold of between 25% and 35% for the last 60 or so years.

However, with the advent of the internet, meeting through friends has fallen to only the third most popular way to meet a partner, with about 20% of those in the study stating that they’d met that way.

Meeting in a bar or a restaurant, once around 10% back in 1940, has now jumped to the second most popular way to met a partner, with over 25% now meeting their other-half that way.

The full graph can be seen here:

As you can see, meeting through (or being) co-workers, meeting through a family member, meeting in school, meeting in college, or meeting in church have all dropped significantly since the arrival of the internet, with meeting as (or through) a neighbour now found to be the absolute dead-last way to meet a partner.

The same study found that 65% of same-sex couples meet through the internet, a number that is consistent with a similar study performed in 2009, and this is most likely down to a narrower potential to find a partner in bars or restaurants, and the specificity that online dating can be bring for those looking within a smaller dating pool.

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