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Gingersnap
11-18-2010, 11:02 AM
Poll: 4 in 10 Say Marriage Becoming Obsolete

Updated: 3 hours 5 minutes ago
Lauren Frayer Contributor
AOL News

(Nov. 18) -- Nearly four in 10 Americans think marriage is becoming obsolete, according to a new survey that reveals changing attitudes on gay marriage, unwed couples and the definition of what a family is.

The study, conducted by social scientists at the Pew Research Center in coordination with Time magazine, also shows that Americans' attitudes toward family issues differ by race, age and social class. It's based on interviews with 2,691 adults reached on their cell or land-line phones during the first three weeks of October. Pew researchers also analyzed demographic and economic data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

The number of Americans who think the institution of marriage is becoming obsolete has increased since the late 1970s, according to a new survey by the Pew Research Center and Time magazine.

Among the biggest changes in Americans' attitude toward marriage was the number of those who now believe the institution is becoming obsolete. Thirty-nine percent of respondents said they believe that's the case, compared with 28 percent who said that when Time magazine asked the same question in 1978.

Those most likely to think marriage is becoming obsolete are people who are part of the trend: 62 percent of unmarried couples who live together and have children. Forty-two percent of self-described conservatives also believe marriage is becoming less popular and say they're troubled by it.

"If four in 10 are saying it's becoming obsolete, they're registering an awareness of a very important social change," Pew researcher Paul Taylor told USA Today. "It doesn't necessarily mean marriage is about to disappear or has disappeared."

Overall, 67 percent of respondents said they're still optimistic about the future of marriage and family in America, more than the country's education system (50 percent optimistic), its economy (46 percent) or its morals and ethics (41 percent).

In 1960, 68 percent of American twenty-somethings were married. By 2008, 26 percent were. Among adults of all ages, 72 percent were married in 1960, compared with just over half -- 52 percent -- in 2008, according to the Pew research.

So while marriage is becoming less popular, attitudes toward it also differ by class, age and race, the Pew survey found.

For instance, the gap between marriage rates for college graduates versus those with only a high school diploma or no degree is widening. In 1960, the gap was 4 percentage points, with 76 percent of college graduates marrying versus 72 percent of non-graduates. By 2008, the gap had jumped to 16 points, with 64 percent of college graduates getting married compared with 48 percent of those with a high school degree or less. Those less educated still said they would like to marry, but do so in smaller numbers because of financial concerns, the research found.

AOL (http://www.aolnews.com/nation/article/poll-4-in-10-say-marriage-becoming-obsolete/19723552?test=latestnews)

Apocalypse
11-18-2010, 12:08 PM
I don't know about Obsolete, but it definitely is not the same as it was 60 years ago.

With the average of one devoice over the life time per person, more and more people being single parents, more people living in marriage-less relationships. Marriage is not looked upon the same as it was for our parents.

NJCardFan
11-18-2010, 12:25 PM
I don't know about Obsolete, but it definitely is not the same as it was 60 years ago.

With the average of one devoice over the life time per person, more and more people being single parents, more people living in marriage-less relationships. Marriage is not looked upon the same as it was for our parents.

And look how that's turning out. A single parent household isn't always the best atmosphere to raise a child.

Apocalypse
11-18-2010, 12:32 PM
And look how that's turning out. A single parent household isn't always the best atmosphere to raise a child.

I never said it was the best. Problem is people don't look at marriage as they once did.

NJCardFan
11-18-2010, 01:51 PM
I never said it was the best. Problem is people don't look at marriage as they once did.

And for that reason, society is taking a hit.

noonwitch
11-18-2010, 04:28 PM
My parents always told me while I was growing up that it was wrong to live with your partner if you aren't married. Then they got divorced.

My dad has lived with 2 different women since the split, 24 years ago. He is married now to the second one.

My mom, who dated no one until a few years ago, is shacking up with her boyfriend.

It's kind of hard for younger generations to believe in the sanctity of marriage when their parents teach one thing and practice another. My dad used to get mad at us for watching "Three's Company", even though there was no sex going on in that scenario. He used to tell me "I don't care how old you are, if I catch you living with a man, even if he's gay, I'm coming to drag you out of there".

Gingersnap
11-18-2010, 08:09 PM
I certainly knew a lot of shack-ups when I was first married. Some did get married but so far as I know, all of them split up.

Having been successfully married for a long time, I would say that the biggest obstacles to marriage are random sex and unrealistic expectations.

Men don't need to get married at this point to obtain sex. If they are willing to adjust their standards, they can get free sex every day of the week. They don't even need to get married to get help with the rent and free childcare - a lot of women will take that particular bet.

So men have no particular pop culture social pressure to get married.

Women, on the other hand, almost all want to get married for the obvious economic and status benefits. Their problem is that they also roll a bizarre set of emotional and psychological expectations into marriage that would have baffled Grandma.

Up until recently, very few women expected their husbands to be sob-sister type confidants, nannies, sexual athletes, and an endless source of emotional support and lifestyle novelty. What Grandma wanted was a provider, a good father, and guy who ate dinner on time and cut the grass.

These unrealistic expectations frustrate women and blindside men. So, the women become bored and believe they can do better which accounts for over 60% of divorces today. The other 40% is usually down to equal opportunity cheating.