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Young adults increasingly choose to delay marriage

Posted by on in Cohabitation
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A recent study from America has found that young adults are increasingly marrying at later ages—if at all—and giving birth to more children outside of marriage.

According to the study, from the Population Reference Bureau (PRB), only 20% of all households included married couples with children in 2010, down from a high of 44% in 1960. By contrast, people living alone now represent 27% of all households.

Other findings of the report include:

  • By 2012, only 46% of young adults ages 25 to 34 were married, down from 55% in 2000. The median age at first marriage continues to rise, reaching 28.1 for men and 26.5 for women in 2011.
  • Married couples and unmarried cohabiting couples are equally likely to have children younger than age 18 in their home, about 40% for each group.
  • In 2010, 41% of all births were to unmarried parents, up from 33% in 2000. The steepest increases in nonmarital births were among women in their 20s: about 63% of births to women ages 20 to 24 occurred outside of marriage in 2010.
  • Not only are women having fewer children (the current U.S. average is 1.9 children per woman), but rates of childlessness also have increased. Between 1980 and 2010, the share of women ages 40 to 44 who were childless nearly doubled, increasing from 10% to 19%.

"If current trends continue, more men and women will postpone marriage until their 30s, thus spending a smaller portion of their adult lives married," said Mark Mather, associate vice president of Domestic Programs at PRB and report co-author. "Compared to their mothers and grandmothers, more of today's 25-year-olds appear on track to remain unmarried through age 40."

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