Do Women Need Marriage Anymore?


by Brandi Savitt – March 1, 2012

The Changing Face of the American Family

The recent New York Times article, “For Women Under 30, Most Births Occur Outside of Marriage,” really got us thinking about motherhood, money and marriage.   The story addresses the changing face of family in the U.S., and how illegitimacy no longer has the same stigma for young unmarried mothers – in fact, it is the new norm.

And while 59% of all women who give birth in the US are married, it is the generation of young mothers under 30 who have tipped the scales the other way – with the biggest jump among white women in their 20′s.  So, why are so many young women choosing NOT to walk down the aisle?  Is it possible that men are phasing themselves out of their role in society and don’t even know it?

What’s Love Got To Do With It?

In the tradition of marriage, the notion that you marry for love is relatively new.  In fact, it was not until the 1920′s that dating became a popular trend.  Historically, marriage was a simple economic union between families.  It was our human need to ensure our survival and better our position in society.  And while most of us today shudder at the thought of living in a loveless marriage, the economic need for a woman to wed has typically outweighed that of men – that is, until now…

Gender Role Reversal

According to a Pew Research Center study, between 1970 and 2007 the education and income levels of married men and women have completely flip flopped.  Until the last couple of decades, more men completed college and were the sole bread winners of the household.  But today, the tables have turned…

The 2009 Labor Census showed that when the recession hit in 2008, 75% of the decline in unemployment was among men of  prime working age, while the growth rate of women in the workforce actually increased.  Plus, there are more women today graduating from college than men, and the dual income household is commonplace - with many women making more than their husbands.  All of these changing  factors have greatly increased the man’s economic need to marry while decreasing the financial motive for women.

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4 Responses to “Do Women Need Marriage Anymore?”

  1. Simone M says:

    Raising a child is not all about the money. It’s about love and care. It doesn’t matter which parent stays home more or which one earns more money. It’s about sharing responsibility.

    And… if the single mother dies, or becomes disabled? What happens then? The child becomes an orphan and goes into the gov’t run foster care system? Yeah, we know how well that works.

    I think having a child as a single parent is selfish act.

  2. mari says:

    as if marrying a man means you won’t end up a single parent

  3. Jennifer says:

    Kids need two parents. The best you can do is offer that to them. Yes, it doesn’t always work, but we owe that that much!!

  4. Gina Burgess says:

    Of course women need marriage. It isn’t about stigma, or money, or even about social status. It is about team work, helpmeet (that word literally means valor such as in fighting side by side). Did you ever hear the proverb that a single strand cord is easily broken, double strand cord not so easily, but a triple strand cord cannot be broken? That points directly to marriage with God being the 3rd strand. Men need marriage as much as women.

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