Education

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Education

Postby housecat » 16 Jan 2012, 09:24

How do you feel about dating someone with much more/less education than you have? Is it more acceptable for a man to date a woman with less education than for a woman to date a man with less education?

I have a friend who is trying to fix me up with someone with only a high school education. I've never spoken to him, and I've not agreed to anything at all. He's American and not in Taiwan, so it's not likely to ever happen anyway, but this is the first time I've really thought about this issue since finishing my MA.

My ex husband was less educated than I, but had more marketable job skills. Every other person I've dated has had either the same amount, or more education than I. Now for that to happen, I have to find a single, middle aged guy, with an MA or PhD. Should this matter to me? Does it matter to you?

I think it matters to me for a number of reasons. Firstly, usually the more education one has, the more income one is likely to have--just generally speaking. Next, I want my son's education to equal or surpass my own, so I want educated role modles in his life. Also, I'd think that at LEAST a BA or BS would be needful because more educated people simply think differently than those with only high school or less. I mean, there is a reason we go to school in the first place. We weren't content to stay out of school and do manual labor, or start a service based business (which are things I imagine most people with only high school education typically do).

Now, I don't mean to say that an uneducated person isn't a wonderful person! Please don't yell at me for that. But honestly, I don't think I'd have that much in common with someone with only a high school diploma, even if I'd never left the States. But it does feel kind of superficial, like rejecting someone based on looks, wieght, or wealth. But then, we all do that to some degree, right? I'm no beauty queen, but I still cared what he might look like. Is the education thing eqivalent to that?

How do YOU feel about this. What has been YOUR experience?
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Re: Education

Postby Gryphon » 16 Jan 2012, 09:33

Steve Jobs was a college dropout. So was Bill Gates. Traditional education isn't everything.
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Education

Postby headhonchoII » 16 Jan 2012, 09:42

That's not really what she's talking about. As a big generalization women tend to want to marry up and men often marry down.

I've thought about this a bit before, I think it's difficult to have a long term relationship with people who have a much different status in society. This kind of classification cuts across races and countries.
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Re: Education

Postby StuartCa » 16 Jan 2012, 09:50

I guess it really depends on what he's doing now. If he's a high school dropout working as a laborer you may not have much in common with him, if he's worked his way up through industry and is now in a decent management position his education level shouldn't matter. Maybe he's done extra courses to get professional exams and has no need for a degree, give him a go, what do you have to loose?
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Re: Education

Postby housecat » 16 Jan 2012, 11:02

StuartCa wrote:I guess it really depends on what he's doing now. If he's a high school dropout working as a laborer you may not have much in common with him, if he's worked his way up through industry and is now in a decent management position his education level shouldn't matter. Maybe he's done extra courses to get professional exams and has no need for a degree, give him a go, what do you have to loose?


Those are good points. That's a bit how it was with my ex husband. He didn't have the same amount of education, but he had earning potential in areas I didn't. It kind of evened out. But I doubt I'll go for the fix up. I'm here, he's there--just for one. This is just the first time I've considered this. I was just going to turn my friend down out of hand when I heard he had only a high school education--that was the first reason. But then I thought that maybe this wouldn't be "fair." There are plenty of other reasons to turn this down, though, and it's not the point.

My thought process was that many men may not care about education, but will turn down a girl who may not be attractive enough just for that reason. Is that "fair?" Are these things only natural? If I want to date again, I'll have to take this other dynamic into consideration. It's one I haven't considered before. And obviously I haven't dated in AGES, as I haven't even thought about this stuff.
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Re: Education

Postby zyzzx » 16 Jan 2012, 12:33

You should also wonder how men feel about dating a woman with more education than them. One would hope that it wouldn't matter, but perhaps some of the less enlightened men out there might feel a little insecure about it?
I can report that, as I try to think of all the married women I know with PhDs (and I know a lot), I can only think of one who is married to someone without a PhD. That's kind of depressing, actually.
I wouldn't have a problem dating someone with somewhat less education than me, but I dunno, I feel like it'd be very hard to relate to someone who didn't go to college.
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Re: Education

Postby Indiana » 16 Jan 2012, 12:57

My two best girlfriends have PhDs and one husband is a high school dropout (10th Grade) but has a decent earning potential because of his skills and work experience. It is a really odd pairing but it works somehow and they are great together. The other woman is married to a man with a Bachelors who is retired from the RAF and is now working a job in the UAE making about $150,000 a year. Not bad.

Personally, if I were single, I highly doubt that I would date someone without at least a Bachelors Degree. That's because I view education as more important than many things, and I would want to date / marry a person who viewed it in the same way that I do.

My husband, for example, is the type of person who always wants to learn new things. He is constantly seeking knowledge in new areas and sees his life as an opportunity to acquire knowledge. That's one of the reasons I fell in love with him so quickly and I can't imagine being with anyone who is not the same way. I care about this more than earning potential as well. A smart, educated man is a huge turn on for me.

While a person can acquire knowledge through self-study without getting a degree, having a degree also shows the drive to better oneself in the job market, for example. A person who doesn't have the desire to commit to getting a degree and thus is stuck in dead-end jobs doesn't do much for me at all, never has.
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Re: Education

Postby bookworm120 » 16 Jan 2012, 13:08

housecat wrote:How do you feel about dating someone with much more/less education than you have? Is it more acceptable for a man to date a woman with less education than for a woman to date a man with less education?

I have a friend who is trying to fix me up with someone with only a high school education. I've never spoken to him, and I've not agreed to anything at all. He's American and not in Taiwan, so it's not likely to ever happen anyway, but this is the first time I've really thought about this issue since finishing my MA.

My ex husband was less educated than I, but had more marketable job skills. Every other person I've dated has had either the same amount, or more education than I. Now for that to happen, I have to find a single, middle aged guy, with an MA or PhD. Should this matter to me? Does it matter to you?

I think it matters to me for a number of reasons. Firstly, usually the more education one has, the more income one is likely to have--just generally speaking. Next, I want my son's education to equal or surpass my own, so I want educated role modles in his life. Also, I'd think that at LEAST a BA or BS would be needful because more educated people simply think differently than those with only high school or less. I mean, there is a reason we go to school in the first place. We weren't content to stay out of school and do manual labor, or start a service based business (which are things I imagine most people with only high school education typically do).

Now, I don't mean to say that an uneducated person isn't a wonderful person! Please don't yell at me for that. But honestly, I don't think I'd have that much in common with someone with only a high school diploma, even if I'd never left the States. But it does feel kind of superficial, like rejecting someone based on looks, wieght, or wealth. But then, we all do that to some degree, right? I'm no beauty queen, but I still cared what he might look like. Is the education thing eqivalent to that?

How do YOU feel about this. What has been YOUR experience?


I agree with you, and I think you're not the only one who thinks this as well. Not really superficial, there's nothing wrong with wanting to be with someone you're not attracted to- same goes for intellect. From my own perspective as a female, I wouldn't go for anyone who had anything less than a qualification at university level. I've personally managed to attain 2 university qualifications, so I don't see why a potential date can't do the same. The only exception I'd make to this is if they had very useful practical skills that would be of importance in a job sector or if they were just naturally gifted. My current bf has more qualifications than me, but we're both on the same intellect level, so I guess guys don't mind dating down as much.
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Re: Education

Postby GuyInTaiwan » 16 Jan 2012, 13:40

In the main, I'd agree with what others have said. However, for me, there would be some caveats.

Education and earning potential do not overlap nearly as much as people think they do. My cousin finished high school and then became a painter (as in walls, not portraits). His sister's husband is a concreter. In Australia, tradesmen make big money even if they work for someone else, but if they work for themselves, they make tons of money. I'd even suggest they make more than the average person with a bachelor's degree in anything other than a STEM degree. They certainly make more than me and they certainly make way more than my friend who has a Master's in English and is writing a novel whilst working as a media analyst on the side. He's possibly the smartest guy I know (he studied ancient Greek in high school as an extra-curricular activity) and because of his job, he has a massive awareness of what's going on in the world at large. Yet he's as poor as a church mouse.

Likewise, I've met plenty of people who are really smart on paper and have all sorts of advanced degrees, but if you talk to them about anything outside their areas of specialty (especially any kind of common issue) they're complete knuckleheads. One of my two best friends in Taiwan studied biology at university, but has since done nothing with it. He teaches English in Taiwan, but his main interest in life is investing. In this sense, he is self-educated, but he knows about a million times more about this kind of stuff than the average person who even works in that field (he's told me about some of the conversations he's had with guys who work at hedge funds or investment banks). Aside from being extremely interesting to talk to, he's probably one of the few people I know who will be really financially successful in life. His girlfriend is obsessed with higher education, and will probably go on to get a Ph.D. and maybe even become a professor here. Yet she strikes me as someone who has very little to say intellectually, let alone anything remarkable.

The third issue, which relates to the above, is that pursuing tertiary education is, at times, the worse option financially. I've written before about how I've calculated the break even time line for me to do a Master's and work in Taiwan (as opposed to investing the money). Likewise, I've also written about the time line for a Taiwanese person studying abroad to break even here. In the main, both turn out to be bad financial decisions.
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Re: Education

Postby Indiana » 16 Jan 2012, 14:04

GuyInTaiwan wrote:
The third issue, which relates to the above, is that pursuing tertiary education is, at times, the worse option financially. I've written before about how I've calculated the break even time line for me to do a Master's and work in Taiwan (as opposed to investing the money). Likewise, I've also written about the time line for a Taiwanese person studying abroad to break even here. In the main, both turn out to be bad financial decisions.


I totally agree with this for people who plan on staying in Taiwan. For people willing to live elsewhere, though, sometimes the financial benefits of having further education can be worthwhile. I guess it all depends on where you want to live and what you want to do (and age as well).
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