Slow and steady wins the race: Life history, mate value, and mate settling
H M Dillon et al.; Available online 9 June 2013, Article in Press
Personality and Individual Differences;
Life history theory explains how individuals decide to invest their limited resources, which involves several trade-offs. Particularly relevant to the current work, individuals can choose to invest in current or delayed reproduction (a slow life history strategy), which implicates a trade-off between the quantity and the quality of one’s offspring. Choosing to delay reproduction allows for increased self-investment, and previous research has demonstrated that traits requiring self-investment are related to higher mate value. As such, the current study hypothesizes that slow life history strategy will predict high personal mate value and high levels of partner mate-value within heterosexual partnerships. Similarly, those with a slow life history strategy should display fewer tendencies toward mate-settling. The current work employs both subjective and objective measures of mate value within mateships to investigate these hypothesized relationships. As hypothesized, significant positive relationships among life history and mate value were detected, suggesting that a slower life history strategy corresponds to high ratings of mate value for both self and partner. Also, life history strategy is a significant predictor of subjective, objective, and Mate Value Inventory ratings of partner and self. Further implications and potential future works are discussed.
[Dennis Mangan wrote a comment on this article: