Thinner women are happier in their relationships, according to research from the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science. But it's not just "thin women" in general. It's relative. Meaning if a wife has a lower body mass index (BMI) than her husband, he's supposedly going to be more satisfied initially, and she's supposedly going to be "more satisfied" over time.
Ooookay. Well, given society's standards of beauty and gender roles, it makes sense that most guys want to be with a woman who is smaller than he is, especially before changes (pregnancies, menopause, etc.) that cause women to gain weight. But what about the idea that we're happier in the long-run if we're thinner than our guy? Could it be that if a woman weighs less and thus considers herself more attractive than her man -- the person she's closest to and likely spends the most time with -- she feels better about herself in general?
Like how having a less attractive friend around all the time makes some women feel better about themselves? Or maybe it's that we think we're doing our guys a favor by staying "skinny" and that makes us feel better about ourselves and our relationship? Either way, the conclusion feels wrong ... and off to me.
What this study really seems like it's driving at and should have taken a magnifying glass to: Women with healthier body image and self-esteem -- regardless of weight -- are obviously happier in their relationships. If you feel beautiful, healthy, and confident, you're probably more likely to be comfortable in your own skin and feel like being affectionate and/or having sex, which I'm sure we can all agree is a big factor in keeping a relationship lovey-dovey. And if your husband makes you feel beautiful -- i.e. he actually tells you that you are and/or you just feel gorgeous and glowy around him -- even better!
And what about women who are much skinnier than their husbands and who are MISERABLE in their relationships? (I know plenty of them.) Or women who are technically larger (weight-wise) than their husbands and who have been over-the-moon happy ... forever!
They're the reason lower weight -- or geesh, more specifically, BMI!?! -- doesn't deserve any credit for bolstering happy relationships. The way this study has been covered so far makes it seem like women should be consciously seeking out men who are chubbier than they are! As if that somehow will lead to true, lasting love. Can you say wacko? We should be encouraging our partners to be as healthy as they can be.
Although, I will say there is something about being a 4'11" petite woman and having a guy who is 6 feet tall with a "strapping" hockey player build. But sorry, researchers -- most women being attracted to taller guys is anything short of news.
What do you think of this study -- is there any truth to women who are skinnier than their hubbies being happier in their marriages?
Image via Gareth Williams/Flickr