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It's 11-11-11: a big day to wed

SINGLE women above the age of 32 and men over 34 are regarded as "leftovers" in Shanghai, according to a survey covering 1,200 Shanghai residents carried out by smmail.cn, the website said yesterday to mark "Single's Day," which falls today.

Tradition in China holds that "men and women should get married when the age comes." Therefore, if people go past that age without marrying, pressure from family and society will rain down. In recent years, unmarried people in their 30s or older have become known as "leftovers," which carries something of a negative connotation.

In fact, women are more challenged than men because people believe that it's quite normal for men to get married late because they have to achieve something in their career first, but women have no reason to stay single for so long.

Female "leftovers" are now increasing in Shanghai. According to the 2010 population census, the number of unmarried women in the city has been increasing faster than the number of unmarried men for the past decade. Unmarried women account for nearly 20 percent of the total adult female population, up 2.2 percentage points from 2000, while for men the figure is 23.6 percent, up 1 percent.

In the poll, about 76 percent believe that "leftovers" are too critical about choosing their life partner, thus it's hard for them to find a spouse.

"I admit that I want to find a man who is at least better than I am," said Su Linglan, 29. "I'm well-educated and have a decent and high-paid work. I've been 'match-made" many times, but none of the men I saw was satisfactory."

Meanwhile, near 90 percent of the interviewees said they trust friends' or relatives' match-making more than they trust themselves to find a partner.

Only 8 percent said they trust the Internet to find a spouse, even though some people have a limited group of friends and thus have fewer opportunities to meet a potential spouse.

The Shanghai Matchmaking Trade Association will hold a massive match-making part! y over t he weekend at which more than 10,000 single people are expected to participate, among whom two thirds are women, organizers said.


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