According to evolution, women were always smaller and weaker than males and therefore victims to many predators. They required protection from men who were big and strong to fend off any potential threats.
One in five men, however, are happy to let their wife or girlfriend to check a strange noise downstairs in the night. This reveals that they will not go to any lengths to protect the one they love millions of years down the line, paying homage to their ancestors!
Four out of ten men justify this lack of effort because they 'know there is nothing to worry about'.
Yale, who conducted the study, found that one in five men believe their wife is braver than they are.
A spokesman for Yale said:
''While the study indicates that women are generally more fearful and worried about strange noises heard in the middle of the night, there is a large percentage of men who feel the same and will do anything to avoid leaving the safety of their bedroom.
''In the majority of cases, noises in the small hours are caused by the weather, pets or the neighbours, but in the middle of the night it is easy to let our imaginations run wild.
''Suddenly the prospect of creeping downstairs in the darkness can be really daunting, and something couples will do anything to avoid.
''Sometimes it is a good idea to get piece of mind by double checking all the locks on doors and windows before going to bed, just to ensure a better night's sleep.''
One in ten men are actually too frightened to go downstairs to check on a noise, letting their partner brave the elements and find out what it is.
Despite the plethora of horror films that have stirred our imaginations when things wake us it the middle of the night, the most common things to wake us up are car alarms, cats fighting, snoring, thunder and heavy rain.
‘I completely agree with these stats, I was laid in bed with my partner and there was a bang from downstairs and he didn’t even make an effort to go and see what it was. I had to go downstairs to find out what had caused it! I was terrified’
Four in ten men have been woken in the night by a noise that they thought was someone breaking in. Despite this they are still reluctant to leave the safety of their own bed to act on their suspicions.
Many couples are affected by quarrelling neighbours, people talking loudly in their gardens, playing loud music or troublesome pets.
Those that conjure up more sinister imaginings are doors and windows banging.
Women appear to be the lighter sleepers having an average of eleven sleepless nights in a month compared to men who have only eight.
One in twenty people still check under the bed before getting into it at night.
56% of men and two thirds of women are habitual in checking all the the doors and windows are locked before having some shut eye.
44% of women and 28% of men second guess whether they have locked the front and back door and often argue with their partner about whose turn it is check.
A fifth of Brits have a weapon under their bed in case the worst happens, as it makes them feel safer in their slumber, including baseball bats, heavy torches, walking sticks and golf clubs.
‘My Dad has a Lord of the Rings style sword by his bed. He has no idea how to use it properly, but anyone who broke in would have to reinact a battle scene to get past him!’
The Yale spokesman added:
''Things that go bump in the night more often than not turn out to be false alarms.
''However, despite this it is still important to ensure home security is a key priority.
''Statistics show that burglaries increase by up to 20 per cent when the clocks change, as criminals take advantage of the darker evenings.''