Is there a right age to get married or to begin a long-term relationship? between the ages of 23 and 27 (45 percent), or late if they married. In Wolfinger (), I analyze data from the National Survey of Families and Households. Controlling for family structure of origin. ABSTRACT In the present study an attempt has been made to investigate the relationship between mean age at marriage, education and fertility among Uttar.
The NSFG respondents were married between and He found that the linear relationship no longer existed in the USA, but had been replaced by a quadratic relationship.
Given this table, Cohen stresses the importance of the linear relation the way divorce odds fall sharply as marriage is delayed from the late teens to the late twenties, and rise only modestly, if at all, after that in comparison with the curvilinear one. My first aim of the current blog post is to replicate these findings from the USA for a number of European countries.
Divorce and marriage patterns are different between the U.
Want to Avoid Divorce? Wait to Get Married, But Not Too Long
Also, patterns vary within Europe Catholic versus protestant countries; egalitarian welfare states versus market-oriented. My second aim is to see whether unions with or without a marriage or civil contract produce different outcomes compared to only marriage. I use the available harmonized data of the first wave of GGP in order to ensure the highest level of cross-national comparability.
I analyze first union or marriage only and whether they ended in union dissolution or divorce. I use both male and female respondents and I do not control for any background characteristics.
Want to Avoid Divorce? Wait to Get Married, But Not Too Long | Institute for Family Studies
Note that this is a conservative estimation of the validity of a curvilinear relation between age at marriage and divorce risk, because the quadratic parameter is added to an equation that already contains a linear parameter.
This means that the curvilinear relation must be prominent to be accepted. The background variables are educational level and whether the partner had already children from an earlier union. For some countries the quadratic parameter of age at marriage is highly significant in the two equations: Table 2 shows the percentage of marriages that end in divorce each year for each combination of age at marriage and years married in the UK so-called life table estimates.
This table is comparable to that of Cohen for the USA. The UK is, of course, an Anglo-Saxon country, and it has a high divorce level and a strong market orientation. British individuals who marry for the first time between the ages of 35 and 39 have a higher divorce risk after five years of marriage than individuals who married for the first time between the ages 30 to But those individuals who marry after 30 have a lower divorce risk compared to individuals marrying earlier.
Table 3 shows the same for Germany, a mixed Protestant and Catholic country with a strong family-centered tradition.The Perfect Age to Get Married
Individuals who marry when they are older than 34 tend to face a slightly higher risk of divorce in their first five years of marriage than individuals marrying in their early thirties. Moreover, the divorce risk is clearly higher for individuals when they marry at age 40 or later, versus marrying at age 30 to Often they are preceded by a period of cohabitation, with or without a civil contract.
In most European countries cohabitation is also common among the higher classes and a question of lifestyle, while in the U. The successful cohabitations in Europe, as in the U.
If we exclude cohabitations from our analysis of the relation between age at first union marriage or not and union dissolution risk, we might have flawed results. Therefore I also compute the relation between age at first union and union dissolution risk. Note that first union also can include marriage at some point of the relationship, and union dissolution can also include divorce.
This is a big change. How can this change be explained? The first step to answering this question is to see if the pattern persists after adjusting for a variety of social and demographic differences between survey respondents.
Note that the NSFG is a cross-sectional survey, which means that all respondent information was collected at a single point in time.
Consequently the effects of education, religious attendance, and other impermanent demographic attributes on marital stability may not be causal.
Results involving these variables should therefore be treated as provisional. Past the age of 32 or so, the odds of divorce increase by 5 percent per year of age at marriage. None of these variables seem to have much of an effect on the relationship between age at marriage and divorce risk. Additional tests revealed that the relation seems to function more or less the same for everyone: For almost everyone, the late twenties seems to be the best time to tie the knot.
Does the experience of staying unmarried well past the age of 30 somehow make people unfit for a lasting marriage?
They may offer the temptation of adultery. Be that as it may, the number of prior sexual partners NSFG respondents had does not explain the relationship between age at marriage and marital stability. Instead, my money is on a selection effect: Such people naturally have trouble with interpersonal relationships. When they do tie the knot, their marriages are automatically at high risk for divorce.
Revisiting the Relationship between Age at Marriage and Divorce | Nicholas H. Wolfinger
More generally, perhaps people who marry later face a pool of potential spouses that has been winnowed down to exclude the individuals most predisposed to succeed at matrimony. There are obvious strengths and weaknesses to this sort of explanation.
Accordingly this should be a focus of research going forward. The other pressing question about this theory concerns how matrimony has changed: To answer this question we should ponder the social forces that discourage marriage in the United States. People now need more work experience to make the same wages, so they delay tying the knot.
Second, there are now many more alternatives to matrimony.
Young adults need not be married to have sex lives, and they are free to live with their partners out of wedlock. I view the newly heightened divorce rate for people who wed after their early thirties as a sort of practical pushback against the social forces that are driving up the median age at marriage. Many people who delay marriage nowadays for financial reasons marry as soon as they feel they can afford it.
These are the people who wed in their late twenties, the years of peak marital stability.