America’s Growing Concern

Dr. D Ivan Young, MCC ask a profound question, “Are relationships in America in a crisis state?” A survey done by Pew and Time magazine in 2010 of 2,691 Americans found that nearly four in 10 Americans said that marriage was becoming obsolete. Forty-four percent of those 18-20 said it was obsolete. Recently, growing concerns over a decline in marriage and overall trends pertaining to changes in American household demographics have prompted a great deal of attention and investment.

“In the minds of Americans, getting married and becoming parents are two different things. Their top priority is being a parent, second to having a successful marriage. People have separated the two things. Years ago, they were closely linked to one another,” stated W. Bradford Wilcox, the director of the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia.
“The bottom line is that kids are experiencing more instability and more hardship because the adults are less likely to get and stay married,” Wilcox said.
In 2009 the United States Center for Disease Control quoted the following statistics on marriage and divorce:

  • Number of marriages in 2008: 2,162,000
  • Marriage rate: 7.1 per 1,000 total population
  • Divorce rate: 3.5 per 1,000 population (44 reporting states and D.C.)1

The survey indicates that over two million people were married in 2008. For every 1000 Americans, there were 7.1 marriages; 3.5 of those marriages ended in divorce. Moreover, for every two marriages there was at least one completed divorce. Not included in these statistics are those that separated, filed for divorce or experienced abandonment.

The Bigger Picture: American Relationships

The National Survey for Family Growth2, published by the National Center for Health (NCHS), indicates that during the latter half of the 20th century, there were notable increases in the age at first marriage among Americans. In addition, the proportion of unmarried and never-married adults, escalated. Research also indicates, in comparison with unmarried persons, married persons tend to exhibit greater physical, emotional, and economic well-being.

Children in households with two married parents differ from those in other types of households on measures such as child achievement. According to this study, given the potential benefits of marriage, concerns over a decline in marriage generated investment in marriage promotion programs such as the Department of Health and Human Services‟ Healthy Marriage Initiative. Results within the survey indicate:

  • Over 70% of men and women aged 25-44 have never been married.
  • The probability that men will marry by age 40 is 81%; for women, it is 86%.
  • A larger percentage of women than men aged 35-44 have married by age 35.
  • Smaller percentages of black women aged 35-44 have married by age 35 than white or Hispanic women of the same age range.

Simply put, a majority of men and women will eventually get married with a probability of marriage by age 40 at 80%. Important differences arise; however, in the timing of first marriage. Fewer black men and women have been married at all ages relative to white and Hispanic men and women. White women have a 90% probability of having married for the first time by age 40, compared to a 63% probability for black women.
The Growing Trend: Singlehood becoming the de facto Norm

According to the US Census Bureau3, the marital status of women in the United States reflects a growing trend toward remaining single. Since 1970, dramatic increases in the proportions of never-married women have occurred among women in the age groups 20 to 24 and 25 to 29.

  • In 1970, 36 percent of women 20 to 24 and 12 percent of women 25 to 29 had not married.
  • By 2000, these proportions rose to 69 percent and 38 percent, respectively.
  • The percentage of women 30 to 34 who were never married approximately tripled between 1970 and 2000, reaching 22 percent.

This report indicates that, higher proportions of men were never married, while higher proportions of women were widowed and divorced. The marital status trends from 1970 to 2000 for men and women followed similar patterns, with increases for those never married or divorced and decreases for those married or widowed.

Between 1970 and 2000, the proportion of women who were divorced more than doubled and the corresponding proportion of men more than tripled. The largest change in marital status from 1970 to 2000 for women and men was the decline in the proportion of those who were married.

Married-couple families constituted over half of all households. Census 2000 revealed married families accounted for 53 percent of all households; female-maintained family households with no husband present represented 12 percent, while male-maintained family households with no wife present were 4 percent of all households. Over the years, the number of male-maintained family households and female-maintained family households, both with no spouse present, increased. During the same time period, the proportion of female-maintained family households with no husband present was more than double that of their male counterparts. Married-couple households dropped from 69 percent of all households in 1970 to 53 percent in 2000. The proportion of women living alone remained approximately the same from 1990 to 2000 after growing during the 1970s and the 1980s, while the proportion of their male counterparts increased from 1970 to 2000. Now, you don’t even want to see the statistics, things have gone to hell in a hand basket.

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Reality -N- 3D Publishing, Inc.

Reality -N- 3D Publishing, Inc. based in Houston, TX is a fast-growing independent publishing house covering the categories of Spirituality, Self-Help and Relationship literature. Founded in 1998 by Relationship Expert Dr. D Ivan Young, and, the late, Juanita Young, the mission behind Reality -N- 3D’s efforts are to effect personal, social and cultural transformation through life-changing written and audio materials. A widening void and gap in the market place exists for individuals that are new to spirituality and in need of user-friendly self-actualization based literature. The long-range goal of Reality -N- 3D Publishing, Inc. is to continually build solid footing in the spiritual publishing market with a focus on urban female audiences. In 2010, Reality -N- 3D Publishing is slated to release several new books including audio books, workbooks and CD‟s in the Spiritual, Self-Help, and Relationship categories.

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1 The Center for Disease Control: Births, Marriages, Divorces, and Deaths: Provisional Data for 2008, Table A2The National Center for Health: 2002 National Survey for Family Growth Data Brief3 US Census Bureau: We the People: Women and Men in the United States, Census 2000 Special Report