Make no mistake, I consider myself extremely fortunate to have been raised in a family where my parents have been married for 30 years AND both sets of my grandparents have been married for 60+ years. The more I think about it, the more I wonder if that could ever be possible again. I think the chances are certainly less than 1%. Times are different now, and marriage is no longer taken for granted. The statistics say that today 51% of adults are single. Combine that with the 50% divorce rate and we are down to about 25% of people who have successful marriages. Now consider the fact that single people are more happy, on average, than married people. So of those 25%, there are several people who are married but not happy with their marriage. People are also getting married much later on average as well. These trends beg the question: Is it actually worth getting married anymore?
I think a big problem with marriage is that people do not think long-term. I would say that for every 100 possible marriages that could be successful for five years, less than ten would be successful for 20+ years. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t get married because there will be rough spots in your marriage, I’m saying that people need to seriously consider the reality of a long-term marriage. So many things will change throughout both of your lifetimes that you need to make sure you are right for each other on a fundamental basis. I hate hearing stories of ugly divorces or one spouse murdering the other and horrible stories like that. Obviously, it is impossible to predict the future, which adds volatility to the potential success or failure of marriage. There are also the legal ramifications and ridiculous costs of marriage/divorce. Based on the fact that we are seeing more and more families where the parents aren’t married to each other, I think people have realized that they need to keep their options open and that committing to such a serious vow is extremely risky. I won’t go out and say that I will never get married, but I could certainly tell you the chances are less than 50%. I love the single life, and as they say, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.
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