Why won't some men commit?

June 22, 2009 2:26:01 PM PDT
Is the man in your life reluctant to marry you, even though you've been dating for three, four, or even five years? The fault may be in his DNA! A new medical study could - in part - explain why some men fear commitment. We all know guys who are commitment-phobes. Actor George Clooney is one. So is Claudia's brother.

She recalled, "(He says), 'We broke up. It didn't work out. I got tired, you know. I have to move on.'"

Berniece says her daughter is dating one.

"She thinks he's going to marry her, but she's been dating him five years," Berniece explained. "I'd give up after that."

Swedish researchers have found some men have a gene variation that actually makes is harder for them to bond in a relationship.

Baylor Psychiatrist Dr. Richard Pesikoff explained, "The person who has the variation either doesn't get married or has more difficulty in a long-term relationship with a woman."

So will guys who won't commit use this as just a big excuse?

Ty Jackson, who's newly engaged, said, "I don't want to say it's a gene thing. It's more of a personal thing. You have the choice to make whatever decisions you want to make."

He's right -- men with the gene variation still have choices.

"(They can) work on their attachment skills, their relating skills, so you can have all the benefits of marriage," Dr. Pesikoff said.

Marvin Hogans, married 10 years, still carries a photo of his wife. He says it's a choice.

"Being mature enough to not stray, just remain committed," he said. "There's so much satisfaction that can be found in that."

In all fairness, we tried to get some men who have an issue with bonding to talk to us, but no one would commit. Finally, there's some advice for any woman dating a dude who won't say, 'I do.'

"Why should I put up with a man who won't make any kind of commitment? Not me," advised Rosalie Burkhart.

This is the first gene linked to male bonding. The same gene has been linked to autism. The researchers said they hope their research might lead to a better understanding of autism.

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Christi Myers is ABC13's Healthcheck reporter

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