In fact, she writes, if a man is willing to go out with a taller woman, there’s a good chance he’s also secure enough to accept a woman who’s “competitive and outgoing and career-oriented.” While Psychology Today kindly offers that women don’t “quite” see short men as “lepers,” Friedman is more accepting than most.

Out of all 925 people, only three left the “desired height” category blank. When the same team took a survey of 181 college students, 29 percent of women said they would feel “awkward” or “weird” dating a shorter guy, and both men and women in this sample were even more exacting about height:More than half of the women—55 percent—said they only wanted to date men who were taller, and 37 percent of men said they would only go out with women who were shorter. But a preliminary new study suggests that shorter men might actually make better partners: They do a greater share of housework, earn a greater proportion of household income, and are less likely than their taller peers to get divorced.

In a working paper (it has not yet been peer reviewed), Dalton Conley, a sociologist at NYU, and Abigail Weitzman, a Ph.D. candidate, used data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics—a University of Michigan project that’s been collecting demographic data on 5,000 families for almost 50 years—to look at how a man’s height impacts different areas of his relationship after the initial dating periodShort men turned out to be somewhat less likely to get married: At every age before 45, they marry at a rate 18 percent lower than men of average height. “Short men may have a harder time getting married because they’re viewed as less masculine,” says Weitzman. “Women who have traditional gender ideals may find that less desirable.” If they do find a partner, though, they’re less likely to get divorced: Divorce rates for tall and average men were basically indistinguishable, but 32 percent lower for short men.

Weitzman explains this by saying that women who are “resistant” to marrying short men are more likely to “opt out” before it gets to the point of marriage: “There’s something distinct about the women who marry short men.” Or maybe it’s just that short men make better partners. They do a greater share of housework:Although other research has suggested that taller men earn more—perhaps because of employers’ biases—they didn’t find evidence of income disparity among the different height groups. Tall men may be, in Weitzman’s words, “aware of the status that is conferred by their tallness”—which might make them less motivated to pitch in at home. Short men are more likely to partner with women who are older and less educated.

21 percent of the short men in the sample coupled with women who had not completed high school, compared with 16 percent of average men and just 12 percent of tall men: Overall, short men are 75 percent more likely to couple with someone who hasn’t graduated from high school.

Source: New Republic