Cohabitation Between Marriage And Marriage

949 Words Dec 28th, 2015 4 Pages
There was once a time when an unmarried couple living together was seen was untraditional and even frowned upon. Only five percent of single women had lived with a man before getting married in the mid-1960s compared to seventy percent in the 1990s (“The Facts,” n.d.). Today, it almost seems as if cohabitation is the first step in a couple’s decision to get married or have kids or both. More and more couples are putting off marriage until perhaps they are better acquainted with their partners. Cohabitation can have both positive and negative influences on relationships ranging from marriage itself to child development. It appears cohabitation occurs much sooner in the United States than many other western countries as well as those in Europe. Along with marriage, Americans tend to cohabit at a much younger age. The typical age for an American woman entering cohabitation for the first time was around twenty-one years old (Cherlin, 2009). Since many cohabitating relationships eventually result in marriage, it could be assumed these American women are getting married at a young age as well. In fact, Cherlin (2009) stated half of all first marriages in the United States occurred by age twenty-five. This was compared to some European countries, which the age of first time marriage was found to be in the late 20s to early 30s (Cherlin, 2009). Continuing with the comparison to marriage, age shout not be considered the only difference. Although considered an alternative to…

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