How Millennials are Changing Attitudes Towards Marriage
By Cheryl Hearts
The dream has always been going to school, getting a job, and starting a family. This has always been the dream for most people until the millennials arrived, and everything changed. Marriage is a beautiful thing, and it has been one of the things most people looked up to in their lives. However, the concept of marriage is getting slightly transformed.
Marriage is no longer the goal for millennials. Lots of people are now taking the long the route to creating a family. Millennials are now pursuing personal goals, educational milestones, and financial independence more than other generations. People who are born from 1981 to 1996 are considered as millennials. Unlike their predecessors, millennials are more inclined to achieve their personal goals rather than build a family. They've even gone as far as to question the importance of marriage. It is safe to say that millennials are changing their attitude towards marriage like never before.
There is an obvious decline in the rate at which people marry presently because the values of Millenials have shifted.
There are lots of stats that show just how much marriages have regressed in with millennials. The average millennial marriage age for women and men is around 29 years and 31 years, respectively, as compared 21 years and 23 years back in 1965. More so, as much as 30% of millennials remain unmarried all through their lives. This is an astronomical rise from the 10% that was recorded in previous generations.
So the question now is why this change? Well, the answer is not too far farfetched. There has been a cultural shift among millennials. Whereas previous generations saw marriage as a necessity, millennials see it as just another option. There are a couple of reasons why marriage is no longer the main goal for people.
Change in Values, and Philosophy
There has been a nationwide change of what really matters most to people. Whereas the goal for past generations was to create a home and raise, most people nowadays don't see it as a priority. The reason for this could be down to the fact that the previous generations saw marriage as the pinnacle and an indicator of success. Nowadays, there are lots of things that they have taken the place of marriage. Whereas people might have valued togetherness then, millennials are more inclined to individualism.
Fear of Divorce and Financial Instability
Divorce has plaid a role in how millennials perceived marriage. The 90s saw the rise of divorce, and this has really affected millennials. As a response to the traumatic experience, most of them have refused to marry. So, in other words, the fear of failure is one of the reasons why they take time in getting married. One other fear millennials have is financial instability. Most young people want to make money before they start a family. So, most of them spend a good amount of their time trying to accumulate wealth and financial security.
Millennials Have a Keen Sense of Purpose
By delaying their marriage date, millennials are making progress in other areas of their lives. Their strong sense of purpose is allowing them to gather helpful life experiences. Which will help them become better people and ultimately achieve their purpose in life. It is no surprise that most of them are trying to climb up the corporate ladder, build their careers, and acquire the necessary degrees before considering marriage. While keeping marriage aside, they are trying to make ends meet in other areas of their lives.
In a way, you could say that the reason why millennials are not so keen on early marriage like previous generations is due to the fact that they are trying to be the best version of themselves before they marry. For those that spend time developing themselves educationally, financially, career-wise, and so on, they are doing so not just for themselves, but also their families later on.
For millennials, this approach is a really good one. Striving for self-actualization, personal development, and growth, achieving the purpose, and attaining success, are all prerequisites for establishing a successful family. For them, marriage is essential, but other things come before it on their scale of preference. Moreover, those things will be helpful when they decide to start a family.
Millennials have turned the tables on marriage, and have redefined it to fit their lifestyle. While millennials are taking their time to get married, they are not doing so for the sake of it. Instead, they are forgoing it for other ventures and experience that will help them in their personal lives, and also relationships in the future. The perceived delay of millennials in getting married doesn't mean they are bad at relationships when compared to past generations. What it simply means is that they have more options.
Cheryl Hearts is a writer and journalist from Boston, Massachusetts. Her passion for writing started at an early age and evolved during the high school years. She enjoyed creating her own stories, so she decided to make writing her career. After earning a degree in Journalism, Cheryl started running her own blog CherylHearts.com where she’s covering topics of great interest to society.