Long-Term Cohabitation Is Just As Good As Marriage

Many conservative, religious, anti-game and traditionalist types like to claim that this blog underplays the advantages offered to men by marriage. They redundantly quote studies purporting to show that married men live longer, healthier lives than single men. We here at Le Chateau have balked at such assertions, helpfully reminding our traditionalist, neoBiblical brethren that the same benefits found in marriage can be had living in long-term, loving relationships.

The reasoning is simple: the pro-marriage studies are conflating the benefit of living with someone under marital contract with freely living with someone who loves you. Sex, love and affectionate companionship don’t feel any more fulfilling when a piece of paper is signed. If you really think about it, it makes no sense that a man’s health would improve and his lifespan increase because he signed on the marital dotted line. Something else is at work here, and that something else is long-term shared love, with or without the imprimatur of a marriage license.

Of course, haters miss the nuance and continue their rampage against the dissolute lifestyle of the “player”, which they mistakenly believe this blog advocates. (In point of fact, this blog advocates learning game and the way of the alpha so that men have the freedom and the options to pursue whichever type of relationship with women they want, whether that be marriage and its attendant risks or frisky one night stands and their attendant, albeit lesser, risks.) “PUAs are wrong! Marriage is good for men!” they wail, refusing to even tackle the debate points to the contrary that crop up on this blog.

The Chateau warned the trads and supposed “realist” thinkers (this post at Audacious Epigone is a good example of the kind of statistical legerdemain I’m talking about) that the studies claiming health, sexual and psychological benefits accruing to men from marriage were comparing the wrong variables. The comparison should not be between married men and single men, but between married men and ALPHA men in unmarried relationships. Single, quasi-celibate betas and omegas bring down the averages for single men as a whole, and make married men look fucking great in comparison.

The claims about marriage benefits disappear once you alter the variables to reflect a fairer comparison:

1. Unmarried men in long-term relationships receive just as many health and happiness benefits as married men. The crucial variable is not the marriage certificate; it’s the love.

2. Unmarried, cohabiting men enjoy the pleasure of thinner lovers than the fat wives enjoyed by married men. Strike one against the notion that men enjoy better sex within the confines of marriage, even if they are getting more of it than single betas. All indicators are that, once married and backed by the long arm of the law, women pretty much let themselves go to pot.

3. Unmarried players are just as desired by women for marriage as beta providers, (but unmarried players just don’t tend to commit to women as readily.) So marriage tells us little about the quality, or alphaness, of the men who willingly take up the shackles.

4. There is no evidence I’m aware of that married men have more frequent sex with their indentured sperm receptacles aka wives than unmarried men *in relationships* have with their girlfriends. That’s the key distinction. My bet, if such data could be extracted, is that unmarried men with girlfriends, and particularly those who cohabit, have more sex than married men. I throw the challenge out to the GSS nerds to unleash the data.

5. Finally, why do pro-marriage anti-gamers always assume that maximizing sex frequency is the desired goal for men? Quality matters. One hundred sex sessions with a seacow will be less satisfying for most men than one session with a knockout. Go ahead, ask any man about his fondest sex memories. That one night with the bombshell will immediately leap to the front of his mind, crowding out the three years of sex with his dumpy wife. Not to mention, many men will gladly trade lots of one pussy for less of many pussies. Variety is the spice of life.

But wait, stop the presses! Look what we have here. Yet ANOTHER study confirming the Heartiste worldview.

A new study, published in the Journal of Marriage and Family reveals that married couples experience few advantages for psychological well-being, health, or social ties compared to unmarried couples who live together. While both marriage and cohabitation provide benefits over being single, these reduce over time following a honeymoon period. […]

Previous research has sought to prove a link between marriage and well-being, but many studies compared marriage to being single, or compared marriages and cohabitations at a single point in time.

This study compares marriage to cohabitation while using a fixed-effects approach that focuses on what changes when single men and women move into marriage or cohabitation and the extent to which any effects of marriage and cohabitation persist over time. […]

The results showed a spike in well-being immediately following both marriage and cohabitation as couples experienced a honeymoon period with higher levels of happiness and fewer depressive symptoms compared to singles. However, these advantages were short lived.

Marriage and cohabitation both resulted in less contact with parents and friends compared to remaining single – and these effects appeared to persist over time.

“We found that differences between marriage and cohabitation tend to be small and dissipate after a honeymoon period. Also while married couples experienced health gains – likely linked to the formal benefits of marriage such as shared healthcare plans – cohabiting couples experienced greater gains in happiness and self-esteem. For some, cohabitation may come with fewer unwanted obligations than marriage and allow for more flexibility, autonomy, and personal growth” said Musick.

I think we can at last put to rest the myth that marriage is some kind of uniquely beneficial arrangement for men.* As this blog has been saying for years, you can get all the benefits of marriage in a loving long-term, unmarried relationship, including cohabitation, without the unbelievably shitty risks.** And now science proves it. Of course, most betas will persist in the erroneous belief that they have to lock a girl in by marrying her, but that’s just testament to their inability to view women through anything but a lens of fear.

*Note: Claiming that a particular romantic arrangement is good for individual men is not the same as claiming it is good for society. While cohabitation offers many advantages to single men, it is probably better for a heterogeneous collective and its mutant posterity that society organize itself around the institution of marriage and the two-parent family. That means making marriage more enticing, not less, for the typical shoe-gazing beta stuck in diversityland.

**As more men come to understand the tangible and intangible benefits that cohabitation offers, and embrace the lifestyle, expect to see hordes of feminists and pilgrim johns try to regulate it so that it begins to resemble in burden the same crumbling wreck of marriage that men are abandoning in droves. There’s no way those interests are gonna let a cash cow in the form of transfer payments from men to women just disintegrate overnight. And make no mistake, or be deluded by the sloppy romanticism with which beta males imbue the institution: marriage is a sacrifice for men, and a gain for women. There are no two ways about it. Men have to surrender fealty to their primary directive to spread their seed in exchange for second-rate benefits that can be had just as easily within unmarried LTRs, while women get sustained material and emotional provisioning that more closely aligns with their innate monogamous proclivity. All the sacrifice from legalized commitment, in other words, is born by the man. Cohabitation is an escape clause that no feminist or tradcon, if they give it some thought, can allow to persist unimpeded.

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