January 6, 2011

Only One True Love

28%

Throughout human history, poets, balladeers and songwriters have celebrated the idea that there’s just one true love for every living soul. Only 28% of today’s Americans agree.

Throughout human history, romantics, poets, balladeers and songwriters have celebrated the idea that there’s just one true love for every living soul. Do everyday Americans agree? Well, 28% do. But 69% do not. Views about one true love do not correlate with marital status or with age. However, men (31%) are a bit more likely than women (26%) to say that every person has only one true love; and Hispanics (47%) and blacks (32%) are more likely than whites (24%) to feel this way. Education matters, too: those with a college degree are only half as likely as those with a high school diploma or less to say everyone has just one true love (19% vs. 37%). Conservatives (32%) are more likely to say this than moderates (24%). Catholics (38%) are more likely than Protestants (30%) or those who are unaffiliated (17%) to say they believe in just one true love. A Pew Research survey posed a follow-up question to the respondents who say they believe in just one true love: “And have your found yours, or not?” Nearly eight-in-ten (79%) say they have. These responses correlate both with age and marriage. Among those who say there’s only one true love for each person, about half of 18- to 29-year-olds say they’ve found theirs (54%), compared with nine-in-ten adults ages 50 and older. Meantime, fully 96% of married adults who believe in only one true love say they’ve found theirs, compared with 61% of all unmarried adults and 79% of cohabiters. Read More