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December 14, 2009

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Single, stuck, born in '70s

MORE and more women in big cities are joining in the group of 3S - (born in the) 70s, single and stuck.

These women in their 30s are independent and well-educated; many have high academic credentials, a high salary and high social status.

They haven't found the right man.

Statistics show that Shanghai and Guangzhou, in Guangdong Province, each have more than 860,000 3S ladies, a jump of 240,000 from 10 years ago in both cases. The number in Beijing is around 300,000.

On the contrary, the number of single men in big cities has declined from 36 percent 10 years ago to today's 34 percent.

The unmarried urban men tend to be lower income, of lower social status and not having much education.

This gender imbalance makes it tough to find a mate.

"I won't lower my sights. If I can't find my ideal husband, I'd rather stay single," says Echo Luo, a software developer.

Her anxious parents have set up several blind dates for her, but the 26-year-old refuses to go. She moved out of her parents' house to avoid fighting.

Unlike Luo, 29-year-old Liu Jiayan working in a multinational electronics company is much more worried.

"Most of my friends are married and even my younger cousin is going to hold her wedding party next year, which puts me under great pressure," she says. "I don't want to be the one left behind. I will be 30 soon."

She jokes that her top priority is to get married within two years.

"Financial independence, small social circles and high requirements for men are the main reasons that keep those 3S ladies single," says sociologist Wang Mingmei.

"I suggest they enlarge their circles, shifting their attention a little from work to life to meet more male friends. Meantime, they should lower their requirements and expectations and be more realistic."


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