Parental influence over mate choice in a post-industrial context
Keywords: parental choice in post-industrial societies, parental choice, parent-offspring conflict over mating, mate choice
AbstractConflicting interests over mating underpin parental attempts to control the mating behaviour of their children. In post-industrial societies, certain constraints prevent parents from enforcing direct control, however, this paper hypothesises that parents maintain a considerable interest in influencing their offspring’s mate choices. It is further hypothesised that wealthy parents are more interested in influencing their children’s mating behaviour than less wealthy ones, and that parents are more interested in influencing the mate choices of their daughters than of their sons. Finally, the hypothesis is tested that mothers and fathers have an equal interest in the mating behaviour of their offspring. Evidence from a sample of 340 parents provides support for the first three hypotheses, but it indicates that mothers are more interested in influencing their children’s mate choices than fathers.