We conducted three studies to (1) investigate individuals’ beliefs about change in mating desires over the course of emerging adulthood and (2) determine whether those beliefs reflect actual variation in mating desires among emerging adults of varied ages (late teens through twenties). In Study 1, 103 men and women gave their thoughts on how college students change, if at all, in what they most desire in a relationship and relationship partner as they move from being incoming freshmen to graduating seniors. In Studies 2 and 3, using a college sample and then an internet sample (ns = 288 and 307), men and women between the ages of 18 and 26 completed mating strategies inventories and allotted a limited number of “mate dollars” to 10 mate characteristics. Findings suggest that although emerging adults believe that their peers’ mating desires change systematically over time, emerging adults’ self-reported mating desires vary little with age.
Source: “Age Variation in Mating Strategies and Mate Preferences: Beliefs versus Reality” from Evolutionary Psychology – 2009. 7(2): 179-205
I’ve posted before how our mating tastes don’t even change when we’re elderly.
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