A New Study Reveals Hope For The Traditional Family

With traditional family values under constant attack, it’s no wonder the foundations of the family unit are crumbling.

This agenda has caused significant changes in the ways the newest generation of adults view marriage and having children.

But there’s good news on the horizon, proof that the pendulum may be swinging in a more traditional direction.

There have been many cultural shifts in our society in the last two generations.  Most women are working outside the home, younger people are delaying marriage and having children while they get their careers underway, and many young couples are abandoning marriage altogether.

This shift has caused a huge increase in couples living together before marriage or living together instead of marriage long-term.

And while this might be the new “normal” in America today, a recent Pew Research Center study shows it’s not all wine and roses.

In fact, the study showed that married couples are indeed happier with their relationships than couples who are only cohabitating.

The percentage of married adults has declined a bit in recent years – from 58 percent to 53 percent — while the percentage of unmarried couples living together long-term has risen from 3 percent to 7 percent, according to the study.

But the study also shows that the number of younger adults aged 18 to 40 who have lived with someone before marriage is about ten percent higher than the 50 percent of couples who marry in that age range.

While young people – under the age of 30 – overwhelmingly think that cohabitation before marriage is acceptable, nearly half of those still believe that a relationship should eventually lead to marriage and that couples are better off being married.

This is a promising sign, as our nation’s youth are the ones most targeted by progressive viewpoints about traditional values.

And there’s more evidence on the relationship between marriage and overall happiness.  

While both married and cohabitating couples express trust in their partner in terms of being faithful, financially responsible, and truthful, married couples – by far – express greater levels of trust than those just living together.

And nearly 60 percent of married couples say they have a strong marriage, compared to only around 40 percent of cohabitating couples commenting on the strength of their relationship.

Married couples also overwhelmingly state that they are closer to their spouse than any other adult, and that this makes them more satisfied with life in general.

And then there are the reasons behind couples deciding to marry or live together.

Nearly 40 percent of unmarried couples living together cite convenience or financial reasons for their decision, while more than 60 percent of married couples cite a combination of love and the security of commitment as their prime reasons for marriage.

It appears that many young couples today see cohabitating as the first step toward a successful marriage, but that is not always the case.  

It’s often the opposite as couples meet the challenges of making a combined household work.  

Without the commitment of marriage to back it up, ending the relationship is looked upon with less gravity – but the emotional toll can be as difficult as a divorce.

And then there’s the lack of financial or legal protections afforded married couples, something that young couples who separate after living together can find hard to recover from.

While a little over 35 percent of adults in the U.S. have no opinion on whether a marriage is affected by living together first, nearly 15 percent say they believe it can have negative consequences later in the marriage.

The results of the study are good news for the traditional family, as it appears young people are starting to understand that marriage is the best way to establish a long-term, secure relationship.

Are you surprised that married couples are so much happier than those who live together, despite the anti-family agenda being pushed in the U.S.?  Leave us your thoughts.