single man

Over 60 percent of young men are single, almost twice the rate of unattached young women, indicating a more significant breakdown of the romantic, sexual and social life of the American man. Men in their 20s are likelier than their female counterparts to be romantically uninvolved, friendless, and lonely.

They stand at the precipice of an epidemic of declining marriage, relationships, and sexuality afflicting young America. Psychology professor Niobe Way says, “We’re in a crisis of connection. Disconnection from ourselves and disconnection from each other. And it’s getting worse.” The young American man’s social detachment can have unfortunate consequences in the worst-case scenario. Younger men are mainly responsible for increased rates of mass shootings, which some researchers connect to their increased social separation.

Societal changes that started during the Eisenhower years have weathered the patriarchy that ruled the American workplace, classroom and home. Now, women collect close to 60 percent of bachelor’s degrees. Although men still earn more, the income gap has decreased to $43 a week. Scholars think this new era of gender parity has changed relationship dynamics. While these dynamics empower young women, they ultimately remove young men from the equation.

Los Angeles family and couple psychologist Greg Matos said, “Women don’t need to be in long-term relationships. They don’t need to be married. They’d rather go to brunch with friends than have a horrible date.” Matos also recently wrote a viral article called “What’s Behind the Rise of Lonely, Single Men.” Recent years have seen a rise in young, unpartnered Americans, but the pandemic worsened things.

In 2022, the Pew Research Center found that 30 percent of adults aren’t living with a partner, married, or in a committed relationship. Almost half of all young adults are single, including 34 percent of women and 63 percent of men. The decline in relationships is another reason for a decrease in intimacy, with the number of sexually active Americans sitting at an all-time low. In 2019, almost 30 percent of young men reported that they weren’t intimate in the past year, compared to 20 percent of women.

According to Pew, half of single men actively seek casual dates or relationships, but that number is declining. Even long-time researchers have trouble accounting for the relationship gap between young men and women. If single young men outnumber young women two to one, then who are the women dating?

Some researchers believe they’re dating each other, with one-fifth of Gen Z identifying as queer. Research also suggests that bisexual women comprise a large portion of the young-adult queer community. Young women are also starting to date and marry older men, reviving a tradition stretching back over a century. Census figures say that the average age of first marriage is 28 for women and 30 for men.

Women are also starting to get choosy, refusing to marry someone below their standards. Older generations of women were expected to marry a financially stable man who would support them, but those ideals are long gone. Today’s woman expects from a man, but unfortunately, some men don’t have more to give.

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