Why Are Marriages Among African-Americans Declining?

I recently read an article about how marriages are declining all across the United States. Even with all the wedding pictures shared daily on social media the marriage rate in the U.S. is presently at historic lows. It isn’t just low, it is actually the lowest it has ever been on record (since 1867 – when they first started recording marriages).

After reading the article and postulating on the facts presented in it, my heart immediately became heavy as I am one of many Americans who failed to make their marriage work.

The article states, “… Black Americans are substantially more likely to be single than whites and Hispanic Americans, 47 percent versus 28 percent and 27 percent, respectively.” From my perspective, as a black divorced male who is pursuing marriage, I have a small social circle and it definitely benefits me just to know this information. Stuff like this doesn’t get broadcasted on the evening news.

Why are people choosing not to marry?

An article in the Wall Street Journal suggests economic hardship or “strained finances” among Americans is the primary cause to people deciding not to tie the knot. I agree wholeheartedly. As we all know money is the answer to everything (Eccl. 10:19).

Although money is the primary reason why many choose not to marry… it is not the only reason.

Clarissa Sawyer, a professor at Bentley University, says the declining marriage trend is rooted in education. She stated, “Women around the world are getting married later and part of that is because women are getting more educated and investing in their careers. They’ve invested a lot of time and money into college, so they’re getting a job and delaying marriage — if not opting out completely.”

Why do more young adults seem to prefer cohabitation over marriage?

The Pew Research Center did a study on how adults today are choosing their living arrangements compared with previous generations. The study concluded that young adults or “Millennials” are less likely to live with a family of their own than previous generations were at the same stage of life. The study also states Black Millennials are the least likely (of all races) to live in a family, and they are more likely to live with a child and no spouse.

Studies show that due to the high divorce rate, the perception of marriage includes the fear of divorce (and rightfully so, in my opinion). This perception makes single adults more concerned about their personal financial stability, so to preserve their lifestyle just in case a divorce occurs.

For all these reasons and more, many Black single adults are buying less stock in committed relationships, family life, traditional marriage & modern marriages… and choosing to make investments into their individual freedom.


Why is it that with more education and more knowledge, there are so many people (who want to be in a relationship) who truly don’t know how to attract those who they are attracted to? Well, after being in the dating scene for a little over a year after finalizing my divorce, I find most of the single professional women I’ve dated know exactly what they want in a man, yet have little clarity on what a man wants from them.

Don’t trust your mind, trust your heart.

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