Whether it’s a kiss or a bouquet of roses, there’s nary a girl out there who doesn’t dream about finding love. But if you feel like your city is the worst place on the entire planet for doing that, you might just be right. Studies show that certain cities hold a higher risk of heartbreak (hey there, Chicago), while others provide the best opportunities for meeting someone. And not just “okay for right now’s” dredged from the trenches of Tinder. These cities foster the most long-lasting, meaningful relationships. Ahem, like ones involving white Monique Lhuillier gowns and trips to the courthouse. Enter Washington D.C.
Recently, The Daily Beast set out to discover which places in the country set the best backdrops for a love story. First, they started with the cities with the highest percentages of single men and women, because the more people to meet, the better the chances. Next, to determine the longevity of these relationships, they looked at which cities had the lowest incidence of divorce.
From there, they wanted to find out what makes a relationship last (easy… Ryan Gosling). They found a significant correlation between “emotional intelligence,” or EI, and relationship satisfaction. The three main traits of EI are happiness, confidence, and kindness, so the site looked at the most recent Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index to measure the happiness of a city’s residents. Then they examined Census Data to determine residents’ educational attainment and income, leading to a confidence score for each city.
More than one third of U.S. marriages begin with online dating, according to researchers in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
So the Daily Beast talked to OkCupid to find out which cities had the most active users. Finally, the number of bars and restaurants per capita were referenced to gauge which cities offered the most places to meet people the old-fashioned way.
The results are a little surprising. For us, the phrase “our nation’s capital” evokes a mental association something along the lines of “White House,” “80-hour weeks for a senator,” and “binge-watching House of Cards on Netflix.” But D.C.’s residents—71.2 percent of whom are single, according to the Daily Beast—are some of the most hard-working, confident people in the country, which also makes them some of the happiest. Happy, confident people make for the best partners. D.C.’s also home to nearly 300,000 young, ambitious singles, and as we all know: ambition is so sexy. The city also boasts a bevy of amazing bars and restaurants, i.e. tons of opportunities to get someone’s digits.
Being “lucky in love” means more than getting lucky. It means meeting a Mr. or Mrs. Right and keeping them. D.C. issues marriage licenses to same-sex couples, and according to Bloomberg.com, has a 26.7% marriage rate and a low divorce rate of 9.2%. Moral of the story? There are plenty of fish in the sea, but apparently there are more fish, and better quality fish, in Washington, D.C.