by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Countless young single Americans may, on the surface enjoy the perceived freedom that comes without a commitment to one person. If they have an active social life, they often say they enjoy having numerous relationships with varied individuals.
But deep down, when you ask questions that go beyond the superficial, they express their ache for that special relationship with a person they can commit to and connect with for life. As Dan Edmunds writes, “Though we may put many around us, we are alone.”
Many of these singles yearn to be married, but the institutions that provided the opportunity to meet a lifetime spouse have weakened, such as families, churches, and community organizations. For many, this breakdown of community has led to what Edmunds describes as the “breakdown of persons.”
So, why are singles are choosing not to get married and becoming more isolated? A recent study by the Institute for Family Studies and the Wheatley Institute provides some interesting reasons.
While many assume that lack of money or having a stable job in today’s economic uncertainty would be the main reasons people are choosing not to get married, they would be erroneous in doing so. Instead, the number one reason cited by singles for not getting married was what they perceived to be the difficulty in finding the right person to marry.
Regardless of income, a vast majority of singles who desire marriage want their future spouse to be “responsible,” “emotionally stable,” and share the same values about having and raising children. …
… Unfortunately, with the societal breakdown of the family and the lack of marital and parental role models available to young people today, many singles are finding potential spouses with these traits harder to find.