By Ariana Queenan COLUMNIST
What is that sound that you hear? It’s not wedding bells. It’s just the fabric of America being torn into shreds, because marriage is no longer important in today’s society. At least that is the idea that our more conservative friends like to project on those who do not believe in the institution of marriage or find it important.
Marriage does not equate to commitment. Wedding ceremonies are a way in which a couple can announce before friends, families and God that they are going to remain faithful to only each other through sickness and health until the day that they die.
Conservatives often argue that marriage is the foundation of a stable family. A 2010 Pew survey shows that over half of the country believes that having two married parents is best for a child. However, according to a later Pew Research report, 62 percent of children who have parents who are not married will continue to live with both parents. Commitment, though, is not dictated by a marriage certificate.
One does not have to put a ring on someone’s finger, sign a contract or buy an ivory dress in order to prove loyalty to a partner. A grand wedding at a little white church with a crowd of family and friends in attendance is nothing more than a well-dressed Facebook relationship status.
According to Forbes, the average wedding costs about $28,000, and the average divorce cost can range anywhere from $15,000 to $30,000. With a national divorce rate of 50 percent, saying “I do” is not worth the investment.
Young adults who want to get married consider financial security a significant factor when selecting a potential mate, according to a report from the Pew Research Center. Thirty-four percent of those ages 25 to 34 say they are not married because they can’t afford it. Young people are not willing to sacrifice their financial security based on the 50 percent chance the relationship will be successful.
The costs of a wedding and divorce in America equate to the cost of a C-class Mercedes Benz. It would be smarter to forgo the wedding and divorce for the Benz.
There is no longer a stigma surrounding unmarried couples, so the pressure from family and friends that people once felt to tie the knot no longer exists.
According to data from the National Center for Health Statistics, women who first move in with a boyfriend or girlfriend at age 25 to 29 typically end those relationships after about 17 months.
The Pew Research Center finds that after one year, of the nearly three in ten people who marry young, 9 percent break up, and 62 percent continue living together.
Marriage is not as important as it used to be, and its disintegration doesn’t undermine the fundamental beliefs on which the country was founded.
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