Single? Unlucky in love? Not married yet? You might have your hometown to blame for it. Harvard economists, as reported by The New York Times, studied the impact of where children grew up and their chances of walking down the aisle by the age of 26, and found it correlated pretty directly.
Researchers studied more than five million people–so this was by no means a small sample size–looking at children who moved during the 1980s and 1990s. Children who moved to big cities–places like New York, San Francisco, Chicago, and Boston–were less likely to marry. Meanwhile places like Utah and parts of Colorado practically encourage marriage, according to the data.
Nationwide, the top locale with a marriage discouraging impact is Washington, but the stats in New York are even more staggering. If the list was boiled down to only the country’s 50 largest counties, the top five would all be in New York. Yes, looks like all of those “Sex & the City” stereotypes might be true after all.
Now, if you’re wondering if this data only means certain that certain geographic places only delay marriage, that doesn’t seem to be true, as the researchers pointed to other data that suggests the same stats hold true for people 30 and over as well.
Head over to The New York Times for more interesting data on marriage including how your political leanings impact your chances of getting married, and also how growing up in a big or a small town plays a role.