I still remember it like it was yesterday. There was this guy I had been dating for 4 months and I was crazy about him. His faith seemed strong, he was kind-hearted, and he cooked great food! I wanted to ask him to marry me but part of me knew it was too soon. However, I found articles and youtube videos that told me what I wanted to hear that there was no minimum time to marry someone. I bought a ring and asked him to marry me and he accepted, reluctantly. Still, I was the happiest guy in the world that day! Then the next day I discovered he was still flirting with his ex. He even entitled the conversation “My Lover”. It was the first time in my life I could literally feel my heart fall to the floor.
How Long Should a Gay Couple Date Before Getting Married?
A gay couple should date at least 1-2 years prior to getting married. There isn’t that much data available on same-sex marriage longevity as we haven’t had marriage equality long enough to gather any conclusive data.
I was reading an article that said the average couple is now waiting 4.9 years to get married. This makes sense since given the sheer number of us who grew up in divorced households and we don’t want our future progeny to go through the same time.
Beware of the Same-Sex Marriage Rush
A phenomenon that I’ve been seeing a lot with some same-sex couples is every since we achieved marriage equality we rush to marry our partners without knowing them very well. Impulsive decisions often lead to bad outcomes. That’s why we see high failure rates in some same-sex marriages with lesbians having a whopping 80% divorce rate in the Netherlands (source)
The Data on Marriage Longevity
Couples were more likely to stay together if:
- The man said his partner’s looks weren’t that important
- The woman said her partner’s wealth wasn’t important
- They went to church together (46% less likely)
- They didn’t spend a lot of money on the wedding
A Penn State University study concluded that couples that dated an average of 25 months were the happiest 14 years later. Another study at Emory University concluded that couples that attended religious services together on a regular basis were the 46% less likely to get divorced.
The same study concluded the cheaper the wedding the better the marriage as couples that had a wedding that cost less than US$1000 were far more likely to stay together than those with uber expensive weddings. Not surprisingly superficial marriages don’t last either. Couples, where the woman said the husband’s wealth was important, were a whopping 60% more likely to end in divorce. Marriages, where the man said to woman’s looks were important had a 50% likelihood of failure.
What Makes a Marriage Last?
Marriages tended to last longer if:
- The couple are also best friends
- They shared the same religious principles
- They remained intimate with one another
When your spouse is your best friend that means that you can talk to them about nearly anything without a filter. You guys get each other and can communicate on a level deeper than just verbally. When you have that level of a bond that means you know how to resolve a conflict in a way that’s acceptable to both parties. A study from the University of Vancouver confirms this.
Couples that pray together, stay together. That old adage had some truth to it. Couples that attend religious services together on a regular basis had high longevity together versus those that did not. This makes sense because one of the most important factors for the longevity of any relationship, not just romantic, is if the parties shared the same values. Attending religious services together is an indication that you both share the same core values.
Praying also reduces cheating. A study entitled “Faith and Unfaithfulness: Can Praying for Your Partner Reduce Infidelity?” discovered that praying for a partner actually reduced the likelihood of infidelity.[x] In fact, praying for one’s partner was a stronger indicator of lower rates of infidelity than initial satisfaction with the relationship as a whole.
A couple that enjoys each other in the bedroom is more likely to be happy. Sexual conflict can lead to infidelity which is one of the leading causes of divorce. It’s really important that both of you guys are sexually satisfied with each other. Furthermore, if one partner is not that she feels free enough to express her dissatisfaction in a loving helpful way.