There are many characteries that individual wants his/her partner have, such as kindness, good looking, respect, honestly. But we should notice that social factors are playing an important role in mate selection which lead us to the person we choose. Social Homogamy theory is a term that use when individuals are attracted to the people from a similar social background. This similarity can be from same ethnic background, class, age, religion, culture, and socioeconomic status.
Researches shows that people are slowly diversifying who they are dating, but they still like to date people who are similar to us.People in a homogamy status would want to marry with one who is similar to them because they want to live in a relationship similar to the life that they have already experienced. And therefore, Endogamy is a term that pertain to marrying someone inside one social group, ethnicity, or status. People from the same religion tend to have a better understanding of each other, and people tend to find a mate in a same or higher level of income and education as them.
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Another social factor to find a mate is a term of Propinquity-tendency, which means to be with someone in close proximity. We tend to marry or date people who are geographically live and work close to us, so we can spend time with them. Also, Conflict theory is the other factor that influences our mate choices. In the conflict theory there is always someone in charge, and is about the struggle of power. Older men with money tend to marry younger women, who have less resources and bargaining power in the relationship.
So women are most likely attracted to an older mate with financial resources to support them. Therefore the age differences is necessary for men to remain dominant in a patriarchal marriage.People who are immigrant, such as myself, really struggling in finding a mate. They need to adjust themselves with a new culture and new people who are so different from them. Because they are the minority in society is hard for them to find someone from the same culture and ethnicity. At the same time that they like to be with someone with the most similarity to them, it is almost impossible to find one.
So they have to find a mate from their own people, which is not a lot of them and this is limit their choices. Some people maybe change their mindset about the ideal relationship with most similarity and get to the difficult relationship with someone outside their ethnicity. Some group like Armenian people , who moved to the US, do not like to marry someone out of their culture and we mostly see that their dates and marriage is between their own people with those who are similar to them. Even In college as I have noticed, many Armenian boys and girls surrounded themselves with Armenian and not any other culture.
In India, mostly in a back days, parents would engaged their children to another family from India from a very young age, so they could marry when they grow up. Because they do not wanted the wealth or benefit goes somewhere else but their own group. So that marriage was an arrangement to improve their social status and their wealth, and also family name could be continue on. Also some groups such as, Asian, Hispanic, and Arab people tend to follow the homogamy to keep their unique culture as long as they can and stay strong. When I used to live in Iran I had a partner for three years, base on social homogamy theory I chose him because we were similar people with similar social status.
Our ages were about the same with couple years different that made him older than me. Our family economic back ground were about the same, which was middle-class and we both had the same religion thoughts. Also we were both lived in a capital city, so I believe we were the ideal mate. When I moved to the US we were still keeping our relationship as a far distance relationship. But as I mentioned that individuals like to have a relationship in close proximity, we could not stay together eventually. After I lived here for a year, I was looking to have a new relationship, so I had couple dates with American and Armenian guys, and I could not get along with any of them.
I could not find any similarity between them and me, we were different in culture, religion, and ethnicity. These diversity in social factors would not let me to get interested in any of them in order to start a relationship. I used to experience something back in my country with people with same social factors ,which was my ideal relationship type, that I could not find with American or Armenian boys. The most interesting thing is the first time I dated a guy who was from Iran too, we could get along and stay together till now. We are both from same culture, same religion and same social factors.
In all the people that I have dated so far, sometimes there were some differences in religion, education status, or social status, but I consequently always prefered the ones who are most similar to me than others. Indeed, People choose homogamy because they want to hold on on what they already had, they want to share the experiences and memories with their partners that they both have a sense from it. So basically people tend to stay in their comfort zone and prefer to have a partner who can understand them and be comfortable with, other than going to new culture and experiencing a difficult time getting adjusted in a new relationship.