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Marriage rates on the decline, but not for good

Annabelle Menla, Contributing Writer

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We see marriage depicted everywhere from television to early childhood fairytales. It is the  union between two people who become partners in a personal relationship. This union is often looked at as sacred and has been heavily incorporated during the development of the United States. Yet only 50 percent of U.S. adults today are married compared to 72 percent in the 1960s, according to the Pew Research Center. I think it is safe to say that marriage is not valued as highly as it was back in the day.

I am not surprised with the lower number of Americans that are married today. It is often looked at as a shock to some when someone says they want to get married and grow old with one person for the rest of their lives, because we live in a generation of confusion and distractions.

Confusion strikes because many think it is okay to live in broken homes, create a child, support the kid separated and then often move on to another person

Distractions occur because of the mass use of social media. Social media creates the image that there are plenty of fish in the sea — actually, way too many fish in the sea. Therefore, loyalty is lost and people often think they can talk and flirt with multiple people in case things fail with another.

Social media was not an issue when most of our parents had us. Being born to an African parent, I grew up in a two-parent home that valued the core concept of love and unity. My mother did not have to worry about my dad texting multiple women and social media was not present at the time. They have been married for 27 years.

“Fifty-four percent of white adults ages 18 and older are married. This is lower than the share of Asians who were married, 61 percent, but significantly higher than the share of Hispanics, 46 percent, or blacks, 30 percent,” according to the Pew Research Center in 2015.

Some minorities appear to have the lowest percent of marriages. Yet, my parent’s union withstands the labels and this is most likely due to their cultural upbringing and values they were taught back home in Ghana.

Love just seems to be lost in this generation. Everyone wants to act like they do not care about anything. Everyone wants to act unbothered. Everyone wants to act like the tough guy, so they refuse to let someone in.

On the other hand, some people just value their independence and feel they do not need a significant other to enter their life. But at the end of the day, it is okay to be loved.

Others say they just have not met the right one yet.

“About six-in-ten say that a major reason they are not married is that they haven’t found the right person,” according to  the Pew Research Center.

That is totally understandable, but perhaps they have stopped looking or just have been looking in the wrong place. The world population is approximately 7.5 billion people. I am almost certain there is someone out there for everyone.

When all is said and done, we are the writers of our own future. We happen to be in a generation that values independence. People do not want to rely on another person for love. Some people want to explore and enjoy their lives before they settle down and some just do not believe in marriage or the “right one”.

Marriage was definitely more valued back in the day compared to now. However, we can definitely change the tides if our heart desires. Let love reign America once again.

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1 Comment

One Response to “Marriage rates on the decline, but not for good”

  1. constrainedlocus on October 15th, 2017 5:41 pm

    I disagree. Confusion and distraction are not the main reasons for the precipitous decline in the marriage rate in the west.

    The main reasons for decline in marriage are the high levels of legal and financial risk and liability, and the abject failure of marriage to pass even the most basic cost-benefit analysis for men.

    Marriage has been reduced to a great legal and financial security policy for women, and a lifelong legal, financial and emotional liability for men.

    For the last 50 years marriage has been a legal and financial contract that almost exclusively benefits wives, and holds husbands to a completely different standard of accountability and responsibility – requiring men be financially and legally accountable, provide resources and security, social status and to cede all authority…..or else termination.
    Under the same contract women need do nothing at all. Under marriage contract wives face zero legal or financial accountability or responsibility. To the contrary, at termination of the marital contract, wives are rewarded with cash (unaudited child support, lifetime alimony) and prizes (child custody, the house, assets they didn’t earn, and an endless supply of sympathy) from the family and divorce court systems.

    It is little wonder, you see, why 50% of all marriages end in failure and 80% of all divorces are filed unilaterally, no fault, by the wife. Marriage has degenerated into a financial transaction.

    Fast forward 50 years and yes, shocker, young men who have seen their grandfathers, fathers, uncles, brothers, colleagues and even their own sons have their families detonated and lives destroyed by divorce They hear and see how women refer to men. The least venerated, most despised and ridiculed positions in modern society are none other than husband and father. And we are wondering why half of the population might entertain second thoughts about marriage?

    The laws surrounding marriage, divorce and child custody will never change.
    And marriage rates will continue to fall off a cliff over the next 5 to 10 years.

    Most young men now age 18-35 are ruling out marriage and co-habitation entirely.
    And you really can’t blame them.

    In the past men got married primarily for three reasons (benefits):

    1. Access to unlimited, safe sex
    2. Feminine companionship
    3. Genetic heirs (or some level of assurance that they are his children)

    None of these are guaranteed deliverables, let alone common deliverables. Most marriages are now sexless. And most western women behave like masculine, competing men. The high rates of sexual promiscuity and STIs means that your prospective wife has almost certainly absorbed the genetic material of all of her previous lovers.
    High marriage failure rates and the brutal, thankless, presupposing and punitive nature of marital life in the west itself fails basic cost-benefit analysis. There’s just nothing in it.

    Further, most women age 18-27 are completely uninterested in marriage and are encouraged to delay any commitment until they are 30.
    Women only begin to consider marriage today when they are at the end of their fertility window, at the end of a long roster of less worthy men who invested nothing in them.
    A legion of 28 year old plus highly educated, gainfully employed women can only look upon current male suitors with disgust and disdain.

    Men and women are not the same. We are different. And that difference should be celebrated. It turns out we complement one another.

    But every incentive men ever had to get married has been thoroughly destroyed.
    Maybe something should be done about that?

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Marriage rates on the decline, but not for good