Thursday, May 2, 2013

Single Motherhood Increases Dramatically For Certain Demographics, Census Bureau Reports

The rate of single motherhood, which has been steadily increasing since the 1940s, has skyrocketed in recent years, according to a report by the U.S. Census Bureau released on May 1st.

While the birth rate for single women has greatly increased across all demographics -- according to the report, which is based on data from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey, the birth rate for single mothers in 2007 was 80 percent higher than it was in 1980, and 20 percent of that increase happened between 2002 and 2007 -- the numbers are particularly high for recent mothers (mothers who gave birth in the previous 12 months) between age 20 and 24.

In 2011, 62 percent of women between ages 20 and 24 who had recently given birth were unmarried.

Among women ages 35 to 39, the percentage was considerably lower -- 17 percent of women who recently gave birth were unmarried -- but overall, 36 percent of the 4.1 million women who reported they had given birth in the past year were unmarried. That's up from 31 percent in 2005.

The birthrate among single mothers also varied along educational, socioeconomic and racial barriers. Sixty-eight percent of black women who had given birth in the past year were unmarried, compared to 11 percent of Asian women, 43 percent of hispanics and 26 percent of non-Hispanic whites. Fifty-seven percent of recent mothers without a high school diploma were unmarried compared to nine percent of recent mothers with a bachelors degree or higher. Sixty-nine percent of recent mothers who came from households with incomes with $10,000, in contrast to nine percent of recent mothers with households earning $200,000 or more.

"The increased share of unmarried recent mothers is one measure of the nation’s changing family structure,” said Rose Kreider, one of the report’s authors, in a press release.

Top 10 Wedges  Issues Of  Marriage 2012:

Online Gaming Can Hurt Your Marriage- According to a Brigham Young University study, couples reported lower marital satisfaction when one spouse's gaming interfered with bedtime routines. Seventy-five percent of gamers' spouses wished their partners would put more effort into their marriages; however, when both spouses gamed, a majority reported greater satisfaction in their relationships.

The "Honeymoon Phase" Is A Myth- It turns out couples are happiest AFTER their first year of marriage, according to an Australian study. Newlyweds were found to have a lower happiness score than couples who had been married longer. Researcher Melissa Weinberg attributed this to a "wedding hangover," or the depressed feeling couples get when the wedding is over and the marriage begins.

Getting Angry Can Help Your Relationship- Florida State University researchers discovered that short-term angry discussions can actually be beneficial. Getting angry can help signal that certain behavior from your partner is unacceptable, said lead researcher James McNulty.

Cohabitating Couples Shown To Be Happier Than Married Couples- A study released in January found that while married couples exhibited health gains (most likely due to marriage benefits such as shared health plans), unmarried cohabitating couples experienced greater happiness and self-esteem.

The Later You Have Sex, The Better Your Relationships- Researchers at the University of Texas at Austin found that having sexual intercourse at a later age corresponded with less dissatisfaction with relationships in adulthood. Higher education level and household income also corresponded to a later age of first sexual experience.

Interracial Marriage Rates And Acceptance Rising- Not only are more interracial couples marrying, but interracial marriage is more widely accepted than ever before. In 2010, 15 percent of new marriages in the U.S. were between spouses of different races; in 1980, only 6.7 percent of marriages were interracial.

Married People Are Healthier, Live Longer Than Singles- Studies show that married couples experience lower levels of cancer, heart disease, depression and stress. The health benefits are even more pronounced for marrieds than for couples who are simply cohabiting.

Young People Expect Marriages To Last-
A survey found that 86 percent of single and married people aged 18-29 expect their marriages to last a lifetime. Researcher Jeffrey Jensen Arnett told HuffPost that young people tend to have a romantic view of marriage and go into marriage determined to make it work.

Married Women Drink More Than Single Women- A study on marriage and alcohol found that women drink more after getting married, possibly because they are influenced by their husbands (on average, men drink more than women). Men, on the other hand, were found to drink less after getting hitched.

Son-In-Law Key To Successful Marriage- Here's another reason to get along with your in-laws -- unless you're a woman, that is. A 26-year longitudinal study found that when a husband reported having a close relationship with his wife's parents, the couple's risk of divorce decreased by 20 percent. Conversely, when a wife reported having a close relationship with her husband's parents, the couple's risk of divorce increased by 20 percent.


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