OK, all you single women out there; you cynical, jaded,
illusions-faded babes; you been-there, done-that, heard-that-line,
It's going to be all right.
Guys are coming around.
They say they don't just want sex anymore. They want an
Get real, you say. You want proof.
Well, the proof that women seek can be found in a couple of new
One, a recent University of Chicago study hailed as the most
comprehensive of its kind since the Kinsey studies in the late
1940s and early 1950s, showed that married people have the most
sex. Another, lighter study by Mark Clements Research of New York,
compared Americans' attitudes on sex to those a decade ago. Both
surveys covered things such as the age at which people first have
sex and how many people they've slept with.
But, amid all the juicy stuff was a warm, fuzzy and
oh-so-hopeful detail. Namely, this:
For women, sex without intimacy is barely worth doing at all.
Eighty-six percent of women interviewed for the Mark Clements study
said they wanted "emotional attachment" - to use the survey's term
- when they slept with someone. That percentage is unchanged from
But men! Ten years ago, only 59 percent of the men surveyed
said they couldn't care less (OK, we're putting words in the
surveyor's mouth here) if they ever saw a woman again after the
deed was done. But now, 71 percent of men say they, too, want
Do they really mean it? Or, as several women suggested, is it
yet another line - the new, improved version of "I'll respect you
in the morning?"
Actually, sociologists say, it's a little of both.
"I really think that for men, it's part of a gender spin," said
Edward O. Laumann, one of the University of Chicago researchers and
one of the co-authors of "The Social Organization of Sexuality:
Sexual Practices in the United States. "There are really two
cultures of gender about these sorts of things."
But let's put numbers aside for a minute and talk to real guys
- who say that yes, they have indeed changed.
Take John Dailyda, 40, of Barrington, Pa., who characterizes
one-night stands as "a little boring. Like unfulfilling, maybe?"
Divorced three years ago, he thinks that "getting married again
is a nice idea."
So does Michael Brown, 30, of Camden, N.J. "Men definitely need
to take more responsibility" in their relationships with women, he
said. "A lot of men," he said, "think with their sexual thing. That
throws a man off."
Brown was spending a day last month at Camden's Wiggins Park
with his 5-year-old cousin, Jamal, whose father isn't in the
picture. "You can't just game on any old girl who falls for your
line," he said, caressing Jamal's hair, "because we've got little
kids to think of."
Now, you'd think comments like that - coupled with the fact
that single men outnumber single women in Philadelphia and all of
the surrounding counties - would make women swoon. Think again.
"I think it's a pose," said Melissa Feldman, 33, of
Philadelphia. "I think men just say that to get more one-night
Feldman, a museum curator, and a friend, 30-year-old artist
Emily Steinberg, were hanging out last month, enjoying a balmy
weekend. Despite the brightness of the day, they took a decidedly
dim view of the survey's results.
Men, said Feldman and Steinberg, have learned their lines well. …