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Whether it’s where I’m eating, where I’m traveling or, God forbid, something I’m buying, like a lot of people in my generation—those in their 20s and 30s—I feel compelled to do a ton of research to make sure I’m getting every option and then making the best choice.If this mentality pervades our decisionmaking in so many realms, is it also affecting how we choose a romantic partner?The women who got married before age 20 reported an average annual income of a little over ,000, while those who married at 30 or later earned around ,000. Helen Fisher, an evolutionary biologist and leading expert on human attraction who leads an ongoing study with called "Singles in America", said in a recent interview that the delay of marriage serves as a way of protecting ourselves from a lot of hardship.In previous generations marriage came right at the beginning of relationships, which didn't always have the best results.The question nagged at me—not least because of my own experiences watching promising relationships peter out over text message—so I set out on a mission.I read dozens of studies about love, how people connect and why they do or don’t stay together.
At Our Time.com, we honor the freedom, wisdom and appreciation for life that only comes with time. I asked my dad about this experience, and here’s how he described it: he told his parents he was ready to get married, so his family arranged meetings with three neighboring families. That’s how my dad decided on the person with whom he was going to spend the rest of his life.