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Love, Actually: A National Survey of Adults 18+ on Love, Relationships, and Romance

Despite the stereotype that being in love is for the young, a majority of Americans across all ages say that they are currently at least somewhat in love, according to this study, which was conducted to help inform an article in the January/February 2010 issue of AARP The Magazine.

Key findings revealed:

  • Overall, 73% of respondents 18 and older say that they are at least somewhat in love and 31% say that they are passionately in love. Over two-thirds of respondents age 50-64 (68%) say they are in love.
  • Three-quarters of respondents say they have encountered the love of their life, and men are more likely than women to say that they have encountered the love of their life several times. Only 3% say that they do not believe in true love.
  • When asked about the types of sacrifices people would be willing to make for love, generally only a small proportion say they would be very or somewhat likely to change their lifestyle. The sacrifice respondents are most willing to make is to leave their profession (43%), move out of the country (39%), or convert to another religion (25%).
  • Over three-quarters of respondents strongly or somewhat agree with the statement “true love can exist without a radiant/active sex life” (76%). Nonetheless, a majority say that romance is important to a relationship. Over four in ten (42%) say that it is essential, and another 34% say that it grows even more important as a relationship goes on.
  • More than one in five (21%) believes that it is not possible to be in love with one person and have a crush on someone else. However, 40% admit to having experienced this situation in the past and another 6% say they are experiencing this situation right now.

This study was conducted via the Internet by GfK Roper Custom Research North America, an independent research company.  Questions were included on an omnibus survey from August 28 to September 2, 2009.  Interviews were conducted from among a nationally representative sample of 2,009 adults age 18 and older.  For more information, contact G. Oscar Anderson at 202-434-6343. (17 pages)