Posted by: Christine Johnson | August 10, 2006

So Can We Expect Surveys to Stop Putting Them in the Same Category?

When I take an online survey, quite often these days I’ll see “married” and “living with partner” as the very same option. It is rather offensive to me. Someone just living with their boyfriend/girlfriend is certainly NOT the same as the Sacramental Marriage that my husband and I share.

Today, FIRST THINGS has a post up about a study done recently that discovered that live-in relationships (formerly known as “shacking up”) are not as stable and could probably be classified better as an “intense form of dating.”

Here’s a sample of the article at First Things, but I recommend reading the whole thing:

Research as part of a Cornell University study revealed that the average time couples spend “living together” is less than two years and that only 4 percent of cohabiting couples stay together for more than ten years. Half of all cohabiting “unions” end within a year, and 90 percent within five years. As ever, it is the children who suffer from this laissez-faire approach to relationships. Within five years of the birth of a child, 52 percent of cohabitants split up. This compares to 25 percent of those cohabiting couples who marry after the birth of the child, and only 8 percent of those couples who were already married when the child was born. Thus the experts have finally come to the earth-shattering (and earth-shatteringly obvious) conclusion that marriage is good for the stability of relationships and crucial to the well-being of children.

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