In the United States, marriage is on a quick decline. According to the Pew Research Center Survey that was conducted with almost 3,000 Americans, 39% say that marriage is becoming obsolete. This indicates a major change in the attitudes of many Americans and how they see modern relationships.
Only 51 percent of adults are married in the United States according to the latest census, indicating a record low. This indicates that nearly as many married couples exist as single adults, creating a new standard in society. In many years prior, people would look down on those who were not married as adults as it was tradition and an economically sound way of life.
Many people, about 25 percent in a recent survey conducted by Time, indicated that that they do not want to get married. The remaining 75 percent indicate that they do want to get married, and the majority of them are waiting for love. Among the married people that took the survey, over 75 percent indicated that their marriage could be defined as close; some indicated that their marriages were as close as their parents.
The rapid decline in marriage could be an indication that it is considered obsolete. 44 percent of Americans that were surveyed seem to have that outlook, a 16 percent increase from 1978. This could be due to the state of the economy or due to a social redefining of the term. Traditionally, marriage is a sign of commitment, a legal status, and a religious ceremony.
The biggest reason people cite for not wanting to get married is it is no longer essential. In the 1960s, for example, nearly all college women intended to get married for the financial security and respectability the man would bring them. While love played a role in the marriage, the decision to get married was economical and a social norm. In modern society, marriage tends to be more focused on love, rather than economic status.
Nearly 40 percent of single adults have cohabitated. This supports the fact that marriage is seen more as a voluntary relationship based on commitment. Because more people are cohabitating and saying that love is an essential factor in a marriage, there is a decline in those willing to commit. In a rapid-paced society anything that seems permanent is scary, and while many cohabitants consider marriage, the concept is considered very serious. The concept of marriage is still held in high regard, and many people admire others for taking that step. The median age for a first marriage is 28 for men and 26 for women, also supporting the fact that people simply consider more factors when choosing who they want to spend the rest of their life with.
While some may have the outlook that marriage is now obsolete, it is hard to think of a world without it. Marriage is a tradition that is recognized by many religious organizations and the government. Marriage is still a social norm, especially among college graduates. Less people may be getting married, and the outlook may have swayed from an economic standpoint to a more social one, but people are still getting married every day.
This article was composed by Kevin Shockley, a freelance writer who focuses on family law, family trends in the U.S., dating and divorce, marriage and other related areas; if you need counsel on family law matters you should contact Plano divorce attorney.