I am a fanatic and advocate for marriage. Before I dive into the reasons why I have such a passion for this institution, let me provide the facts about marriage as it stands today in America and Canada. Marriage rates have been on a decline. It has fallen by 8 percent since the 1990’s. The divorce rates among older adults(baby boomers) have increased by 3x since the 1980’s. However the bright spot is, there is a falling divorce rates among the younger married adults (millenniums). Although the marriage rates have fallen among this cohort, the divorce rates has also been falling. Meaning people may not be getting married in this age group, but when they do get married, they stay married longer.
Why do I love marriage? The benefit of good marriage can not be underestimated. Often marriage requires work and communication in order for it to be successful. When two people are able to work together or seek marriage counselling in order to do so, a good and beneficial marriage is produced. Health wise, both men and women in good marriages report higher levels of financial, physical, mental and emotional well being than those that are single. The next question people ask why do you need to be married, why can’t two people just live together in a common law situation.
It is true that there are similar legal benefits to being common-law spouses as compared to legal married couple in most states and provinces. However what makes marriage still favorable over common-law arrangement is the written contract aspect of a legal marriage. It makes it easier to access and retrieve all the benefits attached to being a couple. Can you image an untimely passing of a spouse where no legal will is present? what becomes of the common spouse vs a married spouse? Similar situations have shown us that married spouses fair much better than common law spouses in those situations
Another reason I push for marriage is the security, and commitment mindset that the institution of marriage brings. Although it is becoming easier to divorce one’s spouse, however studies continue to show legal marriage prompts both men and women to stay committed. Couples in co-habituation situations tend to end their relationships at higher rates and to have more of a laissez-faire approach to relationship leading to more passivity in trying to make their relationships work.
Also the respect and honor accorded to legally married people in society can not be underestimated. Although many states and provinces are starting to recognize common-law marriage and giving those unions similar statuses as legal marriage, there is world outside of Canada and the United States. In the situations where many couples are now employed in companies that encourage couples to move to other parts to world for work. What does that mean for one of the spouses who is not legally married to move to another country that does not recognize co-habituation? What additional arrangement do they have to make in different states, provinces and countries when they are moving to those places for work or even travelling to those places?
Finally marriage produces a psychology effect that enables the couple to see themselves as a team. This teamwork mentality allows for incredible growth in all aspects of their life. Imagine knowing you have someone that has committed legally in front of his family, and your family to be there for you for the rest of life? See how that shapes you psychological to be the better version of yourself and enables you to want growth in the relationship including having children together, sharing your finances and sharing your life as a team.