Do we try to date Martians?

Do we try to date Martians?

I've been wondering lately if we make the differences between men and women bigger when we choose our partners.  Men are women are different, but it's usually a matter of degree.  So on average, boys may be more physically active than girls, but the activity levels overlap.  Some girls are more active than most boys, some boys are less active than most girls.

If we matched people up randomly, we should get plenty of couples where the woman was better at reading maps or the man was a better listener.  But look at height - there are plenty of tall women, but very few couples where the woman is taller than the man.  We usually choose to have a taller guy.

Do we do that with other traits?  I'd probably feel odd about a guy who cared more about fashion than I did or a guy who was less athletic than me.  There may be a reason to avoid anyone who folds maps worse than I do, but someone who likes a cleaner house would be kind of nice - and not hard to find in my case.

So I'm thinking maybe men aren't from Mars, but we choose partners we think are more "masculine' or "feminine."  Then we all end up with the same couple problems, even though we could have matched up so that Jane is the one who likes to be by herself and John is the one who needs someone to listen to his problems every night.


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