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Is your marriage losing its luster?

Christine Carter, director, Greater Good Parents | February 13, 2014

One of the greatest things about our long-term romantic relationships is that they can provide comfort and predictability in this wild world we live in. But let’s face it: Long-term relationships can get a little boring. Within nine to eighteen months, research suggests, 87 percent of couples lose that knee-quaking excitement they felt when they … Continue reading »

Meeting, mating and the Web

Claude Fischer, professor of sociology | August 7, 2012

Marriage is ancient and universal. But even in the short history of the United States, who, when, where, how and why we marry has varied significantly. For instance, Americans began marrying across racial lines at noteworthy rates in just the last couple of generations. Also, the typical age at which Americans  marry has fluctuated up … Continue reading »

You can’t have it all, but you might get a “thank you”

Jeremy Adam Smith, web editor & producer, Greater Good Science Center | July 6, 2012

“Having it all” has been trending for two weeks, ever since Anne-Marie Slaughter’s blockbuster essay “Why Women Still Can’t Have it All” went live on the website of The Atlantic magazine. “It’s time to stop fooling ourselves,” says the Princeton professor and former State Department official. “The women who have managed to be both mothers … Continue reading »

Gay vows

Claude Fischer, professor of sociology | May 22, 2012

Much of the to-do about President Obama’s coming out on gay marriage has focused on (besides the political strategy involved) what it tells us about Americans’ tolerance for homosexuality. Noteworthy as well is what the to-do tells about Americans’ — gay and straight Americans’ — attitudes towards marriage. In same week that the French nonchalantly … Continue reading »

The ‘good’ divorce

Christine Carter, director, Greater Good Parents | March 19, 2012

The title of this post is misleading: Divorce is difficult and painful for everyone involved, especially kids. I’ve never known anyone to have a “good” divorce, in that way you have a good meal or good sex — even when divorce was the right thing to do for everyone, including the kids. Divorce is horrible. … Continue reading »

Is divorce immature and selfish?

Christine Carter, director, Greater Good Parents | March 14, 2012

Recently, the best-selling author and popular blogger Penelope Trunk declared divorce “immature and selfish.” She claimed divorce is “nearly always terrible for kids” (and “your case is not the exception”); that it is a sign of mental illness (specifically, of Borderline Personality Disorder); and that it is something that “dumb people” do at higher rates … Continue reading »

Idealizing your partner: Relationship poison or protection?

Rodolfo Mendoza-Denton, associate professor of psychology |

Nobody’s perfect, so they say, and conventional wisdom would hold that entering marriage starry-eyed and blind to your partner’s weaknesses only foreshadows future disappointment and relationship trouble. Some research even supports this idea: a 13-year longitudinal study by Tom Huston at the University of Texas Austin (Huston et al., 2001) found that couples with steady, … Continue reading »

Marrying — up, down, sideways

Claude Fischer, professor of sociology | February 17, 2012

The Pew Research Center recently reported news about marriage from the U.S. Census Bureau: In 2010 just 51% of all American adults were married, compared to 72% in 1960, and Americans who did marry tied the knot later in life. In reality, the situation is not as radically new as it seems. 1950 through 1960 … Continue reading »

These dads get it

Christine Carter, director, Greater Good Parents | June 15, 2011

The research on dads this year may not be as salacious as, say, the theories about why dad-to-be Anthony Weiner would risk his career and marriage by sending narcissistic and semi-nude photos of himself to women. But the kind of post I’m tempted to write about that (e.g., “How Not to Raise a Weiner”) is clearly … Continue reading »

Judge Walker rules Proposition 8 unconstitutional

Rosemary Joyce, professor of anthropology | August 4, 2010

As reported by the San Jose Mercury News, Judge Walker concluded that “Moral disapproval alone is an improper basis on which to deny rights to gay men and lesbians,” the judge wrote. “The evidence shows conclusively that Proposition 8 enacts, without reason, a private moral view that same-sex couples are inferior to opposite sex couples”. … Continue reading »