Maggie's Column -- The Divorce Paradox


NOM Chairman Maggie Gallagher's latest column:

The kids are not doing just fine.

The Institute for American Values’ new updated report, “Why Marriage Matters: 30 Conclusions From the Social Sciences,” is signed by an impressive list of family scholars ranging from professor John Gottman to professor Brad Wilcox. It concludes:

“The intact, biological, married family remains the gold standard for family life in the United States, insofar as children are most likely to thrive—economically, socially and psychologically —in this family form.”

The good news is that divorce involving children is down. The bad news is that children today are less likely to live with both parents. Thirty years ago, 66 percent of 16-years-olds lived with their mom and dad. By 2004, only 55 percent did so.

Divorce is down; family instability is up. How can that be?

More and more young men and women are choosing to have children in cohabiting rather than marital unions.

And cohabitation turns out to be a poor substitute for marriage. Sixty-five percent of children born to a cohabiting mother will experience a family breakup, compared to 24 percent of children born to a married mother.

Continue reading at The Manila Times.