With constant celebrity breakups, a high divorce rate, and the fact that there are now more unmarried Americans than ever, you can't help but wonder if marriage is still something people want in the future. Match pulled data from its annual Singles in America survey to help answer the question: What do today’s singles really think about marriage?
The annual study is based on the attitudes and behaviors taken from a representative sample of over 5,000 U.S. singles between the ages of 18 to 70-plus. Of course, you hear about marriage from your friends and wonder if it’s as ~magical~ as it seems (or looks on Facebook and Instagram). And you may wonder if your own romantic relationship is even headed in a marriage direction.
“Relationships fail when the partners can’t solve conflicts,” Murray Suid, co-author of Married, Etc., tells Bustle. “Just about every couple will fight. It really doesn’t matter what the subject is — traveling, sex, money, children, use of free time, neatness. People bring their differences to a relationship. Those differences can spark conflict. What happens next determines whether the relationship will survive and thrive — or go bad.”
So what did Match’s Singles in America survey reveal regarding what single people think about marriage? Are they optimistic about it or think it’s overrated? Here are five main things Match’s research found.
1. Many Men And Women Are Optimistic About Marriage
A lot of singles are optimistic when it comes to marriage and committing to someone for life — 88 percent of single men and 90 percent of single women believe you can stay married to the same person forever. So I guess there is something to the idea of “till death do us part.” In fact, Match’s research found that singles do not agree that “till death do us part” is a thing of the past — 47 percent of men and 56 percent of women disagree.
2. Singles Also Believe They May Have More Than One Soulmate
According to the Singles in America research, 41 of men and 43 percent of women believe they can have more than one soulmate. But what is a soulmate, really?
“It's all about what kind of person you are, become, and feel like when you’re in their presence,” life coach Kali Rogers tells Bustle. “Love should bring forth confidence and security. When you’re wondering about whether they are ‘The One,’ ask yourself instead, ‘Am I the version of myself I want to be for the rest of my life right now?’ That’s the best way to tell.”
So, it makes sense that more than one person can make you or me feel this way. Just think of times that you thought you and so-and-so were perfect for each other… but then it didn’t work out and you met someone who was even more perfect for you, or equally so. The same goes for when people get divorced and remarried — there may be several soulmates out there for you, so have faith.
3. Speaking Of Divorce, Singles Don’t Think Divorce Means Failure
These days, your friends may be on their second marriages and it’s the norm and NBD — it doesn’t have the same stigma it did decades ago. In Match’s survey, singles do not agree that having more than one marriage in your lifetime means you’ve failed — 65 percent of men and 77 percent of women disagree with that statement. In addition, singles do not believe that marriage licenses should have an expiration date with the option to renew — 61 percent of men and 66 percent of women disagree.
4. Singles Want A Passionate, Romantic Marriage
What if one’s future marriage is not as passionate and romantic as expected? According to the survey, 34 percent of single men and 32 percent of single women believe it’s OK to leave a “satisfactory marriage if you are no longer passionately in love.” Agreed. Life is too short to be unhappy, right? Plus, there’s plenty of ways to keep things exciting once people are coupled up or married.
“It’s important to maintain the health of the relationship and not become complacent, too comfortable, or too set in our routines once we live together,” Ravid Yosef, dating and relationship coach at LoveLifeTBD.com, tells Bustle. “While the fire won’t always burn as strong as it did in the beginning of your relationship, it doesn’t have to dim either.”
5. In General, They Think It Should Be Easier To Get Married
Yep, of those surveyed, singles believe that laws should make it easier to get married, whether that means heterosexual or same-sex unions — 61 percent of men and 51 percent of women think so. Yep! Of course, there’s also the issue of changing-your-name (or not), as well as all the little things that go into wedding planning, aside from the legalities. So if the whole process is easier, it’ll help make the other aspects seem easier (or at least give you more time and energy to focus on those instead).
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