What Does a Post-Marriage Society Look Like—and Will We Be One?

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With fewer adults deciding to marry than ever in American history, it's not hard to wonder what a post-marriage society would look like -- and are we on our way there already?

Rachel L. Swarns, writing in The New York Times, explores the latest in "anti-marriage" trends: Baby boomers are no longer sticking out bad marriages, nor are they necessarily jumping back into marriages following divorces. This follows another recent Times article about the growing numbers of young, working class single mothers in the town of Lorain, Ohio, with writers Jason DeParle and Sabrina Tavernise calling it "the new normal." That prompted us to ask if perhaps marriage was becoming a "luxury" of the rich and well-educated, as those groups seem to be the ones continuing in greatest numbers down the wedded road.

Need more proof? According to Pew Research statistics released in December, 51 percent of adults 18 or older in the U.S. are married, "placing them on the brink of becoming a minority," writes Carol Morello in The Washington Post. This is a fairly significant drop from the 57 percent of U.S. adults who were married in 2000, and even further from the 1960s, when 72 percent of adults were married. But stats also show that today people are marrying later (in the '60s, the median age for brides was 20), and many of them are staying together longer when they do so. So it's not that Americans aren't marrying; it's just that they view marriage somewhat differently, and are doing it because they choose to, not because they have to.

Read the full story at The Atlantic Wire.

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