Valentine’s Day: Battle of the Sexes


Contrasting attitudes about how to celebrate Valentine’s Day induces a modern “battle of the sexes,” according to findings from the 2013 PRRI/RNS Religion News Survey. Here are the five things you need to know about how men and women celebrate Valentine’s Day.

(1) Americans are more likely than not to celebrate Valentine’s Day. More than 6-in-10 say they’re very (40 percent) or somewhat (23 percent) likely to celebrate the holiday, while about one-third are not too likely (14 percent) or not at all likely (21 percent) to celebrate.


(2) Men expect sex more than women do. Men and women often have very different ideas about how their Valentine’s Day will end up. A majority (57 percent) of men report that they’re very or somewhat likely to have sex on Valentine’s Day, while only 37 percent of women say the same.

(3) Men plan on spending more money than women do. Men also plan to spend more on the Hallmark holiday than women—28 percent say they’ll spend over $100, while only 11 percent of women say the same. Men are also much more likely to expect to dine out—60 percent say they are very likely to go out to dinner, compared to only 47 percent of women who say they’re likely to eat out.


(4) More money, more pleasure? A noticeable correlation exists when comparing how much money Americans plan on spending for Valentine’s Day and their expectation of sex. About half of U.S. who spends less than $50 reports that they’re very (25 percent) or somewhat (26 percent) likely to have sex. That number jumps nearly twenty percentage points for Americans who plan to spend $50-100, with 69 percent saying they’re very (41 percent) or somewhat (28 percent) likely to have sex. And at 80 percent, Americans who spend $100+ have the most confidence that they’ll have sex, with 61 percent reporting that they’re very likely and 19 reporting they’re somewhat likely.

(5) We all want an early night. Men and women agree about one thing when it comes to Valentine’s Day: going to bed early. Forty-two percent of men and 41 percent of women are likely to tuck in at an early hour.

This post was updated on Feb. 9, 2016.

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