Divorce Rates Drop, But Marriage Rates Are Dropping, Too

Posted on Oct 31, 2010
The divorce rate has been steadily dropping for a number of years now in the United States – but the rate of marriages is dropping too. Perhaps, many family studies experts say, fewer people are getting divorced because they never got married in the first place.

According to the Huffington Post, couples today are less likely to get married early, more likely to live together for years before tying the knot, and more likely to wait until their late 30s to wed. According to the National Center for Marriage and Family Research, those who finish college are more likely to get married later in life and stay married, while those with high school educations are more likely to cohabitate and never get married to the partners at all.

One of the reasons for this “retreat from marriage” is the economy, family studies experts say. While marriage can save money in the long run, many couples are postponing an official commitment as weddings, rings, and honeymoons are expensive. Others are pooling their resources by moving in together and sharing expenses without ever tying the knot. Just as many people are putting off official divorces during the recession to save money, many may also be delaying wedding bells.

Some worry that fewer marriages will not be good for the culture or for society – as healthy marriages improve quality of life, health, and success. Others say that this is a natural change that does not reflect the number of healthy, long-term relationships in the country. Still others believe that it is a simple result of tough economic times instead of a larger trend.

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Molly B. Kenny
Founder and Principal Divorce Attorney
Molly B. Kenny's Bellevue family law office is conveniently located on Lake Bellevue Drive, making it easily accessible to those in the greater Seattle area. Our divorce and child custody lawyers help men and women get the information, guidance, and compassionate representation they need.
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