Why So Many Americans Are Unmarried, according to the Christian Science Monitor
If you read my post from February, Why I Stopped Reading Nearly Everything Written For Singles, you'll understand my beefs with most articles targeting singles.
If I bother to read one and it's the usual pessimistic kind, I have a visceral reaction to it, followed by an intellectual debate with it. Kind of like yelling at the t.v. during a football game, then breaking down why it was such a bad play.
The most offending singles articles are heavily doused with narrow points of view, which is why I feel great relief when, against my better judgement, I click on an article with a tempting title like, "Why so many Americans are unmarried," and it turns out to be insightful.
While relationship experiences are highly nuanced by a number of factors like personal demographics and environment, we live our lives inside American culture, which can also influence, sometimes without our even realizing, our relationship experiences.
I like this article because it looks at the big picture, occasionally touching micro-issues of age, single parenthood, and race. It doesn't seem to enter the conversation with an agenda, but with facts and is, most unconventionally, slightly positive, if not outright hopeful, in its exploration of those facts. It balances fact with optimism.
For example, here's a few highlights:
- "...There may at any given moment be more single people who have never been married, but that doesn’t mean that those singles are going to stay that way."
- "...research has found that contrary to conventional wisdom (and a number of studies) married people are no more happy and healthy as a group than their single counterparts."
- "...the definition of “single” is a bit vague. Statistically, it simply means unmarried. And that leaves plenty of room for different family structures."
- "According to the most recent statistics, 84 percent of women with college degrees are expected to marry."
- "Around 70 percent of black women are single. (Although, as with whites, that number doesn’t mean that they won’t eventually get married. They do – just not as often as other demographic groups.)"
You will not agree with everything in this article. You will have unanswered questions. You may even challenge some points. But this article is worth your time.
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Photo credit: Wilbert Baan via CC Flickr