Four in 10 say marriage is becoming obsolete

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  1. prettydarkhorse profile image61
    prettydarkhorseposted 8 years ago

    The family as a social institution is facing a lot of changes in the recent decades. For one, the definition and mechanisms of family is changing. There is a trend towards single (solo) parent household. This is due to the fact that couples choose to cohabit rather than getting married. We have seen this in Europe in particular like in Sweden where women choose to have children out of a relationship and also out of wedlock. Some social experts say that this is due to changing economic conditions and more empowerment of women. In other cases the couple choose to cohabit without the benefit of marriage for so many reasons.

    I am just thinking what are the consequences of this scenario to children raised in a single parent household or without the benefit of marriage. There are legal implications and laws about families and family formation that will change for sure.

  2. Rajab Nsubuga profile image59
    Rajab Nsubugaposted 8 years ago

    Those are the ills of capitalism! "If it isn't cash, it isn't worthy my time."

    1. Evan G Rogers profile image70
      Evan G Rogersposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      Ugh please. The family unit has been under siege from government forces for generations.

      It's common knowledge that a huge number of people don't get married for governmental sanctions on the institution: tax penalties, welfare penalties, and countless others.

      The free market values marriage, government doesnt

  3. SomewayOuttaHere profile image60
    SomewayOuttaHereposted 8 years ago

    ...for me the word family in relation to raising bigger than that...i tend to stay away from defining it...

    it's...women raising children, men raising children, men and women raising children, women and women raising children, men and men raising children, grandparents raising children....and sometimes children raising their siblings....forgot...other relatives raising children

    and then their's the marriage thing...or relationships....

    ...then the legal stuff around it all.....

    1. prettydarkhorse profile image61
      prettydarkhorseposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      one thing I see is that in textbooks at times, at school they picture a family with a father, mother etc, there should be a way to educate children about the different kinds of families.

      Like I was carrying a baby  and a 3rd grader asked me, where is your husband. They expect that I am married as young as they are.

      1. SomewayOuttaHere profile image60
        SomewayOuttaHereposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        ..yea, i know....there are folks though that stay away from defining it 'one way'....usually they aren't associated with any one political or religious group either.....the education system doesn't like dealing with some topics still.....becomes of politics/religion getting in the way...and it shouldn't....because it is how families raising children are in reality - they are diverse.....there's nothing more to it than that...i simplify this in my statement....people make assumptions about alot of things...and they shouldn't really....later..PDH!..

        1. Evan G Rogers profile image70
          Evan G Rogersposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          Actually, I'm an education grad student, and we can't stop shutting up about this stuff. Teachers have taken entire courses on this. The conclusions we're reaching is that we need to understand that students don't all have the same family culture. The problem is just that we are forced - despite these socialist public education generated problems -- to have to produce a safe and nurturing environment for all our students

  4. Shadesbreath profile image85
    Shadesbreathposted 8 years ago

    A lot of science fiction in the 70s and 80s projected the demise of marriage as we know it.  One of the common evolutions was what I will call a "term marriage" which, in various ways, was written about as sort of a limited-contract sort of thing, for 5 or 10 year obligations.

    Rajab Nsubuga is taking a shot at capitalism, but I don't think it's that simple.  Blaming capitalism is like pretending that before capitalism there was no greed or ambition.  I think empowered women has a lot more to do with it, but even that isn't quite it.

    I think that the success of capitalist societies allowed the luxury of women becoming empowered, but ultimately allowed the luxury of individual choice.  With the sciences solving riddles and the old religions stubbornly clinging to outdated dogma, religion died, taking God with them.  The loss of God is the loss of both the motivation to be devoted to Goodness and the fear of eternal consequence.  Without one or both of these working, a society of individuals free to pursue whatever they want is going to find lots of individuals choosing the path of least resistance; e.g., teens play video games instead of getting jobs and end up living with their parents into their 30s; people don't commit to marriage because it's easier to go bang someone else as soon as the current spouse gets fat; it's easier to take handouts than work a job that is 'beneath' you, etc.  All the stuff rampant in society now.

    That's why marriage is dying.  It takes commitment, and this society doesn't reward commitment, it provides feel good justifications that enable escaping commitment, and worst case scenario, you can throw cash at people you wrong.

    It's an empty existence though, and I think people who want more meaning from life are smart enough to know the feel good at all times path leads to moral bankruptcy and the absence of contentment in the end.  At least that seems to be the lesson of the great minds across history. So some will marry and remain committed to their promise and their betrothed, and will, I hope, reap the benefit promised by sages eternally that comes with love, selflessness, honor and devotion.

    1. prettydarkhorse profile image61
      prettydarkhorseposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      Tend to agree with your opinion Shades..

  5. Disturbia profile image60
    Disturbiaposted 8 years ago

    I've never had the traditional view of marriage.  I seriously believe that relationships have lifespans.  People change, situations change... I think marriage should be a contract for a set number of years with the ability to renew at the end of each term.  I can't imagine being with the same person for an entire lifetime.  I've been married a few times and each time I knew exactly when it was over.  I'm about to get divorced for the 5th time and believe me, I've put more energy and effort into this one than any before, but my husband would rather fool around with girls he meets on the internet then me, so after five years of being cheated on, it's time to call it quits. I'm sure he'll be happy with his settlement.  He will get all the things agreed to in the pre-nup as well as his shop and the business I financed for him, his cars and trucks, and obviously all his personal possessions. I'm paying off his back child support, all his credit cards, and any outstanding debts as well, and he'll get $150,000 for each year we were together.  My daughter is no longer using the condo I bought for her, so I will sign that over to him (so he will have a place to live) and he will get that too.  Considering he came into this relationship without even a place to live (he was living with his wife who he was cheating on), the clothes on his back and a mouthful of lies, I'd say he made out pretty well.

  6. kerryg profile image82
    kerrygposted 8 years ago

    I have a really hard time believing that marriage is truly "dying" right now any more than it has in previous generations. If you read social history, it's pretty obvious that alternative marital arrangements of various sources have been going on since before the development of written language.

    Out of wedlock births were rampant in many periods, including ancient Rome, the Italian Renaissance, and the Regency and Victorian periods. Adultery was not just common among the upper classes in many societies, it was considered strange if you didn't sleep around, especially if you were a man. Ancient Greek men regarded women as baby machines and reserved their true passion for other men. In a lot of American Indian cultures, a woman could divorce a man by dumping his stuff outside the doorway of their home; in Muslim cultures, a man can divorce a woman by saying "I divorce you" three times and waiting for a couple months to make sure she's not pregnant. These are just a few examples.

    Also remember that due to high mortality rates from childbirth, illness, and other situations, blended families were extremely common in the past. Marriage may have been 'til death do us part, but there was a pretty good chance of death taking one or both partners within 5 or 10 years. I would not be surprised to learn that marriages of more than 20 years are the exception rather than the rule, historically.

    I think the main real difference is that people are no longer looked down upon for not being married to the degree they once were, and people have an easier time escaping a genuinely unhappy or abusive marriage. I can't really see either of those as bad things.

  7. Paul Wingert profile image71
    Paul Wingertposted 8 years ago

    The marriage failure rate in this country is 55%. That alone would give you an idea of why marriage is declining. My marriage lasted a year and I regret getting married. My divorce had nothing to do with government or any outside interference.

    1. Paul Wingert profile image71
      Paul Wingertposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      All my friends are divorcees and they all split up for reasons other than government interfence.

      1. Rajab Nsubuga profile image59
        Rajab Nsubugaposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        Nice Paul! I think Evan G did a little bit of stretching. Let him upgrade his education by carrying out a survey on the causes of divorce. Certainly, government involvement has little to do with the 55%.

    2. Lisa HW profile image62
      Lisa HWposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      From what I saw when researching articles on divorce, any one-figure (or even one sex) statistic can be misleading.  Of first marriages that end in divorce a good percentage are marriages between the ages of 20 and 24.   There was a pretty big decrease for divorced men and women married between 25 and 29 (if I recall correctly).  For divorced men/women (separate statistics)  who had a first marriage in their early thirties, there's a pretty low precentage.  Second marriages have a higher failure rate than first ones do, and third marriages have an extremely high failure rate.  Something like a 55% (of ALL marriages divorce rate) doesn't reflect the differences (statistically) between something like first marriages and third marriages.

      It's been awhile since I looked at the numbers, but just off the top of my head; I'm thinking, if you have a particularly high rate of divorce among first-time marriages that take place between (if I recall correctly) 20-24; and those same people get married a second time - maybe there's one "cllump" of people, adding to third-marriage people, and making up a good chunk of the overall divorce figure.

      Of divorced people who had a first marriage after 30, the percentage is quite low for both men and women (like 6 or 8 percent, depending on the sex of the people and depending on how late in the thirties they married).

  8. evvy_09 profile image71
    evvy_09posted 8 years ago

    Marriage is a sacred agreement between two people who love each other. They agree to put the spouse before anyone else in the world and to help each other grow and succeed in life...together for life.  Or at least, that is what it should be and what I raised my brother to believe. 
    No offense to anyone else but the biggest reason for failed marriages is not taking that seriously enough before the commitment.  The only marriage I've ever seen last was my grandparents who managed to stay married and in love for over 50 years until their death last year. They are the inspiration for my marriage.

  9. sofs profile image88
    sofsposted 8 years ago

    I was just wondering how many people are really working hard at their marriages, for it to really work.. we have so many option today that was never there earlier ... sometimes it is easy to walk out of what you think you don't like than to stay in and make it work.
    Marriage is a hard job indeed... but as for me it is worth all the effort that I have put into it..
    Most people seem to get into it for all the wrong reasons, with unreasonable expectations... I don't think that is a recipe for success anyways.
    Commitment, patience, willingness to work things through, maturity, understanding and not jumping to the wrong conclusion may takes us a long way...but how many have the patience I wonder......

  10. prettydarkhorse profile image61
    prettydarkhorseposted 8 years ago

    Right sofs, sometimes you can't even understand yourself, so it really takes a lot of effort to understand another human being, but it is not impossible to make the marriage work.

    I do think that marriage is not a dying institution bec people will enter the union, then divorce, then remarry again. There are legal benefits of being married aside from emotional and psychological benefits.


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