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Over 50s choosing to cohabit rather than marry

Posted by on in Cohabitation
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A new study from America has found that more and more adults age 50 and over are choosing to live with their significant other instead of marrying them.

The study, by researchers at the National Center for Family and Marriage Research (NCFMR) at Bowling Green State University, found that cohabitation among adults over age 50 more than doubled from 1.2 million in 2000 to 2.75 million in 2010.

According to Dr. Susan Brown, lead author of the study and co-director of the NCFMR, cohabitation among older adults is important because it plays a unique role in the lives of older Americans. Living together provides many of the benefits of marriage such as partnership, without the potential costs, like the mingling of financial assets. “Older adults desire an intimate partnership, but without the legal constraints marriage entails,” Brown commented.

Demographically, researchers found that women are especially reluctant to marry in later life, citing caregiving strains that marriage may involve as well as perceived loss of freedom. Most older cohabiters are divorced, followed by widowed, and then never married, whereas older widowers were more likely to remarry.

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