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5 Reasons Your Negative View of Marriage is Just Plain Wrong

February 8, 2013

No doubt about it.  Our culture’s popular sentiment about marriage is bleak.  The rise in divorce rates plus a cultural ethos that loves independence and hates submission (intimacy aversion) has created a mythology that believes marriage makes our lives worse.  Marriage is often seen as a hindrance to fulfillment. Here are 5 facts gleaned from several empirical studies on marriage that would counter this mythological marital pessimism.  They come from chapter 1 of Timothy Keller’s tremendous book, The Meaning of Marriage.

(1)  61-62% of married people describe themselves as “very happy” in their marriage.

(2) 2/3 of people who are “unhappy” in their marriage will become happy within five years if people stay married and do not get divorced.

(3) The greatest percentage of divorces occur to those who marry before the age of 18, who have dropped out of high school, and who have had a baby before marrying.

(4) Individuals who were continuously married had 75% more wealth at retirement than those who never married or who divorced and did not remarry. Married men have been shown to earn 10-40% more than single men with similar educations and job histories.

(5) A substantial body of evidence indicates that those who live together before marriage are more likely to break up after marriage.

Maybe marriage isn’t so bad after all. . .

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