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Why women prefer taller men

There is a seeming trend in the world of dating that females tend to be most attracted to males that are of a larger height than theirs. If one were to closely observe their everyday surroundings, they would discover that among a majority of heterosexual couples they encounter, that the male is usually the taller counterpart.

According to a research study in 1980 at St Thomas University, records of couple’s bank accounts revealed that only 1 out of 720 couples had a taller female. Moreover, a more recent study in 2014, conducted in collaboration with the University of North Texas and Rice University, found among a sample of Yahoo dating platform users that only 13.5% of males had a firm preference for shorter women while 48.9% of females reported they would only date taller men.

So, the data is evidently clear that women have a preference for taller men. However, the reasons as to why this is the case are often complicated and require a thorough psychological analysis of key theories and research studies to provide conclusive context for this phenomenon of female mating preference which continues to remain prevalent in the modern era of dating. One of the best ways to examine the explanations for this aspect of dating is through the popular psychological debate of nature vs nurture.

Psychologists on the nature side of the argument claim that a women’s preference for taller men is biologically pre-programmed and influenced by evolution and is, thus, hardwired from birth. In the context of evolution, women in ancient times, typically lusted for men who were seen as being strong, powerful, capable and independent because it served as an evolutionary advantage in terms of survival.

This is because having a male partner with these attributes allowed women to produce offspring able to inherit key traits and receive a sufficient amount of resources to boost their survival chances and protect future generations of offspring. It is claimed by evolutionary psychologists that female mating choices like these had been influenced by physical features in men such as height.

Although there is no historical evidence for this assertion, this notion is consistent with a piece of modern-day research in 2000 by a group of British and Polish researchers who, having examined medical records of male patients at a Polish medical centre, found that taller men achieved more reproductive success than shorter men. Also, another 2015 study in the Netherlands, the tallest country in the world, found a positive correlation between a Dutch man’s height and the number of children they had. These studies suggest that the taller a man is, then the more children he is likely to have.

Evolutionists also claim that women in ancient times actively searched for tall male partners they perceived as strong and powerful for the purpose of protection against outside threats which their perceived lack of biological and physical strength left them exposed to. While there is also no historical evidence to support this, there is evidence from a modern-day American study to suggest that most women in fear of being victims of violent crimes are more likely to select male partners who are tall and capable of asserting physical dominance in situations of danger.

Findings like these can explain why commentators like Jordan Peterson, a Canadian clinical psychologist, argued that women do not seek harmless men, rather they prefer men who are dangerous because their ability to be reckless allows them to feel secure in threatening situations.

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