The lead author, John Cacioppo, says about the results, “It is possible that individuals who met their spouse online may be different in personality, motivation to form a long-term marital relationship, or some other factor,” so there may be more here than meets the eye.

online dating leading to marriage-89

Her study extends this investigation by including non-marital relationships in the comparison.

It investigates if the breakup rate of relationships (both marital and non-marital) varies as a result of meeting online versus offline, and if other factors outside of the meeting venue predict relationship dissolution.

(Please take note that neither she nor I use the word “failure” since a marriage or relationship ending can, of course, be the best and only choice for the couple.) Data are used from a nationally representative survey of 4,002 respondents.

(This to me does not sound statistically significant, but perhaps she had her reasons for keeping the sample size smaller.) Her data found that the breakup rates for both marital and non-marital romantic relationships were higher for couples who met online than couples who met offline.

Someone posed this question to me yesterday: Does online dating create more long-lasting relationships than the “real world” does?

I pondered this for a second and decided to do some research. Since it is just about impossible to hold all else equal (the actual people, where they live, age, religion, personality, marriage history, etc.), it is difficult to conclude, One article detailing the results of a 2013 study by researchers at University of Chicago’s Department of Psychology and Harvard University’s Department of Epidemiology found that online dating leads to higher marriage satisfaction and thereby a lower divorce rate.

The researchers addressed the question of marital satisfaction in a nationally representative sample of 19,131 respondents who got married between 20.

Results indicate that more than one-third of marriages in America now begin online. In addition, the study shows that marriages that started online, when compared with those that began through traditional offline venues, were slightly less likely to result in a marital breakup (separation or divorce) and were associated with slightly higher marital satisfaction among those respondents who remained married.

Obviously the actual quality and duration of the relationship turned out to also be significant factors that predicted if couples would stay together or break up.