In major family shift, the big question is why people don't marry

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  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    March 21, 2013 3:10 p.m.

    "You no longer have to get married to have sex. Before that was the driving factor"

    I think there are other major problems with marriage if the prime motive was sex.

  • Obama10 SYRACUSE, UT
    March 21, 2013 9:40 a.m.

    It's simple. You no longer have to get married to have sex. Before that was the driving factor, but now sex is much easier and casual sexual relationships are no longer taboo. Friends with benefits, quickies, or hooking up, are much simpler with no long term relationship. If you can get the "milk" for free, why buy the "cow".

  • raybies Layton, UT
    March 21, 2013 8:22 a.m.

    Marriage continues to erode as people embrace selfishness as their motive in life. Selfishness trusts no one. It is all about "What do I get out of this relationship?" and when children are involved, it's about making those children something you can brag about.

    We are fortunate to trudge through this age of selfishness, where our choices are endless, and we're told none of them are bad as long as you "believe in yourself", and are personally "fulfilled".

    Marriage vows are now written by the individuals entering into this thing that has stolen the name "marriage", but has very little resemblance to a covenant first ordained by God.

    Then again, why believe in God, when in the religion of selfishness, I am a god already unto myself?

    Meanwhile our nations coffers are eaten up by a mountain of hungry bodies--all victims--poor abandoned women and practically orphaned children who have no model, no hope, and no idea what struck them and stole away all the "fulfillment" they might have experienced, had they had the chance at a decent life, before the father left to pursue his hopeless addiction to selfishness.

  • Meadow Lark Mark IDAHO FALLS, ID
    March 20, 2013 6:52 p.m.

    The answer is that families need to be committed to each other and follow the teachings of the Savior. If that were actually done our problems would be fewer.

  • Roland Kayser Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 20, 2013 6:33 p.m.

    The article references another article that appeared in the "The Atlantic". In that article they show a very strong correlation between declining wages for working class men and declining marriage rates. When working class men earn enough to support a family and buy a house, they tend to do those things. If not, then no.

    People with college degrees are not experiencing these same problems, because, generally college educated people can support a family. therefor they have much higher marriage rates and much lower divorce rates.

  • Maudine SLC, UT
    March 20, 2013 5:40 p.m.

    A lot of these comments seem to focus on men not trusting or respecting women and women not trusting or respecting men.

    In August of last year, a 16 year old girl was drugged and raped. She was blamed for this as she was at a party and had been drinking. When the verdict came in, convicting two of her rapists, the media attention focused on how the lives of these young men had been ruined and their promising football careers ended. They two boys were sentenced to a year in jail - with one of them being sentenced to a second year on account of filming and distributing images of the rape victim without her clothes.

    Perhaps we, as a culture, should start teaching our youth to value themselves and others? When there is nothing but animosity towards those who are different than us, when we have no respect for viewpoints that disagree with ours, how can we expect people to look beyond themselves enough to commit to the sacrifices necessary to form committed relationships?

  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    March 20, 2013 4:51 p.m.


    I know of plenty of people at the age of 27 who still feel like they can't take care of themselves, let alone others. Some people do just fine who marry at the age of 18 or 22, etc. There is just as much a point to saying "don't delay forever" as there is in saying "don't rush it". 27 isn't rushing, neither is 25. So at that point it's just a matter of what you'd call the "ideal" age. In Utah that age is considered lower than the national average.

    In past generations young men took on more responsibility at younger ages than we do today. The problem isn't how much is 'thrown onto someone' but that young men are less prepared today. Parents aren't preparing children today like they used to. Instead of instilling values, responsibility, and accountability- we favor impulse, addiction, and vice.

    With youth can come a willingness to learn and strength even more than with age- so long as the person desires it. Discrediting such earlier marriages, or a push for them, simply seems illogical. I don't see people pushing for 18, but encouraging "not waiting too long" does no harm.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    March 20, 2013 3:03 p.m.

    @Henry Drummond
    "Despite all the posturing by conservatives about the "marriage penalty," they never do anything about it." and liberals perpetuate it - so what's the point?

  • One of a Few Layton, UT
    March 20, 2013 2:38 p.m.

    Wow, I love the misogyny. Where do I sign up for that class at church. These comments are full of HIS MONEY, HIS RETIREMENT, etc. So I take it unless women are chained, who wants to own one. I can't imagine why women or men would want to marry if this is the POV they have.

    As a divorce attorney my POV, for every woman who does well in divorce there are bucket loads that are living via handouts from the bishop. I'd love to see a study of the number of women who forget they had kids in a first marriage, compared to the number of men who do the same thing, all the while complaining about child support and yet go on to produce a new brood with the mate they are currently sleeping with.

  • woolybruce Idaho Falls, ID
    March 20, 2013 2:36 p.m.

    So why is ages of 27 and 29 a bad thing? In today's environment that is about how long is takes to become independent isn't it? Why would we want young adults marrying before they can take care of themselves? Wouldn't that mean they are then dependent more on Government Services? Isn't the best way to reduce the size and dependency of Government is to allow young adults become independent before taking on the responsibilities of families before they can take care of themselves? That seems to be a huge contradiction in the State of Utah, complain about dependency on Government and Social Services, but then push young adults into responsibilities before they are ready.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    March 20, 2013 1:40 p.m.

    One reason why people may marry is they feel if they do they have to have a lavish expensive wedding, $8,000 - $35,000. But not really, go to the justice of the peace or the temple, just the two of you or a very select few in addition and let that be that.

    One days worth of festivities isn't worth years worth of debt, or lack of an emergency fund or lack of a down payment on a house if that is your goal.

  • jrgl CEDAR CITY, UT
    March 20, 2013 1:00 p.m.

    Not a week goes by that DN publishes an article like this wondering why the young are not marrying & producing offspring in two parent (not homosexual) families. How about student loan debt that was mentioned in this weeks news? That certainly dissuades the young from marrying when their education debt outpaces a mortgage or rent payment. At least this article mentions that wages have not kept up with inflation for single men. Why would they marry when they can't support themselves?
    Those commenting, on these all too frequent articles bemoaning the state of the family, tend to be two in two camps. Those who brag on their own long successful marriages and offspring or those slamming single mothers as immoral & the cause of society decline. How about we look at the realities in modern life & come up with real solutions instead? Seems the minority populations are marrying and reproducing. Is this a race issue? The single Mom didn't reproduce by herself, so let's stop slamming them with our welfare queen myths. How about more concentration on the young men and how their lot in life can be improved so they could support a family?

  • Thinkman Provo, UT
    March 20, 2013 12:58 p.m.

    Could it be fewer marry because the woman has a very high likelihood to want a divorce after several years of marriage and will just take her husband to court and fleece him of his retirement, his hard earned money and most sad of all alienate his children from him?

    Yes, marriage isn't as sacred as it used to be be with no-fault divorce laws and the growing disease of selfishness.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    March 20, 2013 12:22 p.m.

    Most of the people I know see no advantage to marriage. It doesn't symbolize commitment anymore and there are numerous economic disadvantages. Despite all the posturing by conservatives about the "marriage penalty," they never do anything about it.

  • teachermom6 Northern Utah, UT
    March 20, 2013 11:19 a.m.

    For those who believe that marriage is either unneccesary or outdated, spend one week in our schools and see what lack of marriage is doing to our children. I have been a happily married woman for 20 years. (I was married at 20 and had my first child at 21. My husband and I have been through 2 degrees and 6 kids. One year, had a student that said my life was weird. I was strange because my kids had the same dad, and we had been together for so long. (Her mom had had her at 14, her siblings dad was in jail, and her mom was living with a new boyfriend.) As a teacher I know which kids have two married parents in the home by their behavior, commitment to school, and willingness to participate. Even students who do not perform academically at the top of the class do far better when there are two married parents are stable without drama and baggage. Moms make the difference in getting assignments in, but involved dads make all the difference in the behavior of students.

  • Brent T. Aurora CO Aurora, CO
    March 20, 2013 11:05 a.m.

    We have no stigma left for pregnancy out of wedlock or sexual intimacy outside of marriage. In the attempt to mitigate, and an honorable one certainly, the effects of unwanted/teen pregnancy and STDs we not only distribute to ever younger people, but also create more "safe sex" methods. These have the desired effect of preventing abortions and illness, but also the facilitation uncommitted intimacy... leading to as well more partners and the idea that of taking a test drive, test relationship, etc. We could make laws where both of these are illegal, but based on what moral paradigm? That is, you cannot legislate morality. The situation reflects our society. And this of course is both cyclical historically as well as predicted prophetically.

  • Wolverines Woods Cross, UT
    March 20, 2013 10:46 a.m.

    I am a married man with many single friends. When I ask those friends why they are not married the answers are all very similar. Why marry when women brag about multiple partners and being easy? Why marry and raise another man's kids? Why marry when no fault divorce and the bias against men says she can walk out with half of his money and get alimony on top of the parting monies?

    These are answers from men who are in their thirties with jobs with titles like engineer, lawyer, and medical doctor. These men in the past would have been happily married if it wasn't for the wasteland that the dating pool has become. The pool in their words has become toxic with women who are 'damaged goods' with multiple kids from multiple fathers, with high consumer debt or in some of their views just too old to be a good catch.

    What I have seen is that these men have decided to sit out on marriage because of the environment that has cropped up in the states. This checking out has consequences for men, women and society at large.

  • Monk Pleasant Grove, UT
    March 20, 2013 10:45 a.m.

    Terrible headline. If you say, "the question is . . ." should it not be followed by a question. D News going down.

  • samhill Salt Lake City, UT
    March 20, 2013 10:36 a.m.

    This is yet another indicator that societies can go backwards.

    The institution of marriage was formalized over the centuries in an attempt to induce people to remain together for the benefit of themselves and, in most cases, the children they produced. It has worked.

    The evidence that children fare better in such a relatively stable environment is massive, long-lived and irrefutable. To the point that anyone with any appreciable life experience knows it as an obvious fact.

    Yet, for those who either despair of having such a relationship and/or despise it, for a variety of reasons, marriage is either portrayed as outdated at best or oppressive and reprehensible at worst.

    With marriage losing so much appeal generally it's little wonder that the once ludicrous notion of homosexual "marriage" has so recently and quickly become the cause célèbre with every wind-sniffing politician jumping on the band wagon of political expediency.

    Completely disregarded in all of this disregard for marriage is its inevitable deleterious effect on children and, increasingly, society.

    This is no "Brave World" into which we are headed. It is a return to an abysmal one.

  • bandersen Saint George, UT
    March 20, 2013 7:50 a.m.

    For Children, Leave it to Beaver sounds pretty good! For some families, it really was the reality, still is. Eddie Hascal was probably from a broken family, but sure was likeable!

  • county mom Monroe, UT
    March 20, 2013 6:59 a.m.

    So young heterosexuals are not marrying, they are just living together producing babies.

    (In another article I read this morning), Grandparents are raising there grandchildren more and more these days.

    Children from broken homes are far more vulnerable to abuse and drugs!

    Not a wonder the children are confused, have low test scores and are becoming disadvantaged. Not a wonder we have greater numbers of younger criminals.

    When adults refused to take responsibility and act like adults, the children suffer and the nation becomes corrupt.
    Maybe, the children are better off adopted in to a married homosexual relationship? At least their life would be stable!!!

  • Maudine SLC, UT
    March 20, 2013 7:00 a.m.

    If young people aren't getting married in the first place, how is making it harder to get a divorce going to change that? "Gee, I wasn't going to get married right away, but knowing that I can't get divorced unless abuse, cheating, or abandonment is involved has changed my mind!" said no young adult ever.

    Which brings to mind a question: has anyone asked young adults why they are delaying marriage? There is a lot of speculation in this article - but no indication that the group in question has been questioned.

  • Darkelf Taylorsville, UT
    March 20, 2013 12:44 a.m.

    wow the thinking in the article is what back in the 50's. here is what you missed completely. why the age of marriage was pushed back to 27 and 29. more women are out finding careers for themselves. so they don't have to rely on men for stability. men are not seeking brides right away cause they are also building a career and don't want to have kids right away. if you really want to look at the true number not the shaded numbers. with divorce rates at 50% nation wide, more women and men are dating longer to find out if they truly want to marry the person they are dating. it has nothing to do with money or stability. it has to do with getting married cause they truly love the man or women you are with. not because someone bought a ring and got the parents blessing. also believe it or not. you don't have to get married.

  • onceuponatime Salt Lake City, UT
    March 20, 2013 12:41 a.m.

    I know a couple who wouldn't get married because they received a lot more money from the government if they lived together and filed as single adults instead filing taxes as a married couple. Single moms get back more money for each child than married ones do. It should not be more financially beneficial to "shack up" than to get married. With these types of incentives the government is encouraging many couples to avoid marriage. If the government will give you thousands of dollars to live together rather than marry and money is tight than many people will choose the latter.