Even Oxytocin Can't Save Valentine's Day
Friends Save Marriages

Tips from a Matchmaker

Patti Stanger, CEO of Millionaire Matchmaker, runs a dating service that matches rich men with "the women of their dreams." I won't go there.

But the Newsweek article, TV's Hard-Nosed Matchmaker, is a fun read. And Stanger advises the women who use her service to refrain from sex until they're in a committed, monogamous relationship.

"Because as oxytocin [the "love" hormone] kicks in, you're bonded to him for life. That's why we're at risk and they're not," she says. "Men don't bond through sex."
She's wrong about men not bonding through sex. Men do bond through sex, it's just a bit different than from women.

I'd say that women do tend to feel bonded after sex, no matter what else is going on -- or isn't -- in the relationship. Men can walk away from a sexual encounter without feeling bonded; they need certain other things for their bonding instincts to kick in.

Because vasopressin, a neurochemical of attention and defense, also seems to be more involved in male mating, men are likely to feel more bonded if they're already invested in the relationship in some way, if they need to defend the woman from danger or there's just a lot of other kinds of excitement involved.

The perfect date to get a man to bond during sex: The car gets stuck in the mud on the way to your bungie jumping. He gets it out, both of you bungie, she's a little scared afterward. Just a little....

BTW, Stanger makes it clear that while she sort of advocates an old-fashioned approach to dating, she still thinks women should get equal pay.