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  • Obama to Deep Six Marriage, Promote Cohabitation

    Being raised by two married biological parents has considerable benefits for a child. By contrast, simple cohabitation by biological parents is highly unstable and does not deliver significant long-term benefits. On the other hand, sequential cohabitation by single mothers with men unrelated to the child can actually prove harmful to children. Unfortunately, it is the latter type of cohabitation that is celebrated in the New York Times article.

    Actual marriage between biological parents continues to decline. In 2006, 38.5% of all children born in the U.S. were born out-of-wedlock, up from 28% in 1990. In 2006, the out-of-wedlock birth rate among blacks was 70.7%, among Hispanics, 49.9% and among non-Hispanic whites, 26.6%.

    The American left has traditionally regarded marriage as an imprisoning institution that makes women neurotic. Most women and children are seen as better off when freed from its shackles. Thus the left has watched the steady decline of marriage with indifference or quiet satisfaction. This scornful attitude persists despite the overwhelming evidence that the decline of marriage is the principal cause of child poverty and welfare dependence and is linked to a vast array of other social problems.

    The Obama administration will almost certainly persist in this anti-marriage attitude despite occasional lip service to the contrary. For example, in keeping with the ongoing liberal saga of “defining deviance down”, the Obama team apparently plans to abolish the miniscule “black healthy marriage initiative” created by the Bush administration inside HHS and replace it with a “healthy families” program resting on the tired false premise that single parenthood, cohabitation, and marriage are interchangeable and all of equal value to children, adults and society. Further erosion of marriage within low income communities can be expected.

    Posted in Culture [slideshow_deploy]

    18 Responses to Obama to Deep Six Marriage, Promote Cohabitation

    1. Barb -mn says:

      Can you, Senator Obama, truthfully say that your upbringing with a single parent was equally beneficial then if your father was there? Now, remember what truthfully means as I haven't heard much truth from your mouth.

    2. Scott Canada says:

      You guys are idiots

    3. Pingback: Obama to Deep Six Marriage, Promote Cohabitation « Conservative Thoughts and Profundity

    4. Dennis Aderholt Soci says:

      Marriage is a healthy part of children. It has become a badge of "honor" to say I am a single mom. Then special priviledge is expected. Obama needs to get of this issue, marriage is sacred and blessed by God. I know God is no longer exceptable to many people, but one day we all will have to stand before Him an admit His existance.

    5. Grace, Jacksonville, says:

      Obama talks out of both sides of his mouth. Marriage is declining because people don't want to commit to someone else and as a society we've made that ok. It's not ok – it's appaling to think biological parents don't want to do the right thing and get married and raise their family. No commitment means it's very easy to walk away and who gets stuck with the bill then – The taxpayer.

    6. Theodora Ooms, Bethe says:

      Please don't jump to conclusions about Obama's Administration. Suggest your readers read The Audacity of Hope Chapter 9 on the Family. This is a thoughtful discussion of a range of topics including fatherhood, teen pregnancy prevention marriage, work/family balance. In it he writes: "policies that strengthen marriage for those who choose it and that discourage unintended births outside of marriage are sensible goals to pursue." Later he adds:

      " preliminary research shows that marriage education workshops can make a real difference in helping married couples stay together and in encouraging unmarried couples who are living together to form a more lasting bond. Expanding such services to low income couples, perhaps in concert with job taining and placement, medical coverage, and other services already available, should be something everybody can agree on." p 334

      Sure you can expect the new Team to suggest some changes and improvements based on lessons that are being learned in a program, the Bush Healthy Marriage Initiative that is now six years old…but that doesn't mean they are "anti-marriage." Theodora

    7. Mark G says:

      The first requisite for the happiness of the people is the abolition of religion.

      Karl Marx

      Marxist Barack Hussien Obama, will do just …. make us happy. Just the same kind of happiness he found with his loose charactered mother – experimenting sex with people…

    8. John Kay, New Lexing says:

      Ms. Ooms,

      You totally misunderstand the point of Obama, just as you misunderstand the damage he will do. His quote makes it clear, he believes it is the role of government to have all these services including this type of marriage enrichment.

      And if/when, the government takes this role over they will:

      1. Mandate it, so taxpayers have to pay for it, and the government will run it.

      2. Decide what is taught, who teaches it, and who has to get it. Government is totally out of its league to do any of these things. By the time the leftist social experimenters are done with the curriculum, it will have none of the benefits, and even more gigo messing up the family structure.

      3. They will shove private, and specifically Christian organizations out of the way, who are the best groups at doing this kind of work.

      The result, an over-priced mandate that hurts instead of helps the problem. That is the reality we face in the coming four years, led by a government who call two people living under a roof a "family".

      Your understanding of Obama's reality is what people voted for and think they are getting. The reality will be much, much different.

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    12. jean tacoma wa says:


    13. John Curtis, N. Caro says:

      America has become a Cohabitation Nation as Brad Pitt & Angelina Jolie become the new family role model!

      While I know it is unpopular and not the majority opinion… I would like to challenge marriage educators and counselors to rethink cohabitation. We need to realize that years of condemnation have done nothing to slow down the rate of cohabitation. Instead, it appears to be backfiring as many cohabitating couples reject the guilt-laden attempts to discourage their living arrangement. Most cohabiters fear a failed marriage even more than the criticism, so they opt to live together despite the odds.

      Just like the movie Reefer Madness in the 1960s did nothing to slow the rate of marijuana use, trying to scare couples out of cohabiting is NOT going to enhance the image of marriage education. They will reject the message and reject us. Instead, cohabiting couples will just think that "it won't happen to them!" Like it or not, it, living with someone first before getting married is going to make sense to vast majority of couples NO MATTER WHAT THE RESEARCH SHOWS.

      On top of that recent headlines show that Americans are more accepting of Cohabitation than ever!

      Americans read USA Today, NOT research journals and according to a recent USA TODAY / Gallup Poll of 1,007 adults, most people today reject the notion that couples who live together before marriage are more likely to get divorced. Almost half (49%) said living together makes divorce less likely; 13% said it makes no difference. Just 31% said living together first makes divorce more likely; 7% had no opinion. Respondents also appeared open-minded on whether unmarried couples can have a committed relationship. Half the sample was asked if an unmarried couple who have lived together for five years is as committed as a couple married five years; 57% said yes, they are.

      Now the average age of a cohabiter has risen to 35. Over 60% of all couples who marry will cohabite first and rates of cohabitation will skyrocket since 75% of high school students believe living together is worthwhile and harmless. Cohabitation is much more diverse than once imagined and the following perspectives provide a small sampling of the many facets of living together outside of marriage.

      1) Happily Un-Married: Living Together & Loving It!

      Much like in Western Europe, many contemporary couples report high levels of satisfaction with their cohabitation arrangements. They’re buying homes together, sharing investments, raising children from previous relationships and, purposely, having more children together. They believe in long-term, monogamous and committed relationships but do not feel that marriage is necessary or even desired. (The Brad & Angelina effect!)

      2) From Rebellion to Fear: Why Cohabitation Isn’t What It Use to Be!

      Our motives for cohabitation have been transformed. Baby boomers, who are now quick to condemn cohabitation, started shacking up to rebel against marriage and as part of the sexual revolution. Now, due in part to all the Boomers who shacked up in the 60s, got married in the 70s, divorced in the 80s, and who raised the first full generation of children from broken homes, cohabitation is occurring out of fear of failure and not as an act of rebellion.

      For these reasons and many more, I hope that our profession can find a new way to embrace cohabiters. We need to raise our expectations of them and begin to reach out with a brand new message. We all agree that there is so much that any couple needs to learn about how to have a successful relationship, but unless we figure a way to engage these millions of cohabiting couples, our message will never be heard. We have to get cohabiters "in the tent" and I for one, think that the Orlando conference might result in a break through on how to help cohabiting couples build and sustain healthy, COMMITTED relationships without ever getting married.

      While our profession's collective goal maybe to improve the rate and success of marriage in America, perhaps we need to start with where the majority of Americans already are when it comes to cohabitation. While we may all want them to be married, let's first help them to have healthy committed relationships… "just like Brad and Angelina!"

      Best regards,


      John Curtis, Ph.D.


    14. Scott, El Paso says:

      You get out of a relationship what you put into it. Not getting married before having children is irresponsible and detrimental to the well being of the children. Example; I have two sons, the oldest doesn't believe in marrage (antiquated moral requirement). He has had two kids with two different women, never been married, and the stress of child support and the anguish of the kids when he sees them (joy/ happiness)and then leaves (sadness/ depression)is obvious to anyone. My younger son got married, then had a child and is expecting another. His life is much happier and his child much more socially adjusted and full of happiness.

      Liberals/ Progressives and over paid academics who come up with wild ideas on child rearing need to stay out of the families business. Families are not an experiment, they are our future.

    15. Jeremy T says:

      An article like this is meaningless to me if it doesn't reference studies showing that children coming from standard 2 parent homes more happy/wealthy/stable/ then children from less traditional homes.

      I think the case is probably people that the type of people who have children before marriage are less likely to be good parents. Or, that people who make a good wife or husband also make a good mom or dad.

    16. terry from PA says:

      I agree with scott from el paso, Gov't has NO BUSINESS WHAT SO EVER involved in the family and is just another another example of wanting to run more and more of our lives. Heres a different twist and has more to do within the family and a mindset of today's youth… My husband and I are God fearing conservatives.. been married 33 years, together 35. We only acknowledge a man/woman MARITAL relationship… we've raised two children and for the last five years RASIED a granddaughter…who our daughter had single. THE FATHER IS INVOLVED and we consider him a part of the family..but they are not together as a couple… our daughter was taught about abstinence & birth control..but APPARENTLY DIDN'T care to CHOOSE TO PRACTICE IT…just from coversations around here,in my own home, these young women TODAY want families but don't want the traditional marriage. They seem to have the idea they only need men as sperm donors and will take care of the rest themselves…sadly while my daughter lives here, though she may work, my husband and I pay all the HOUSEHOLD bills… she and other single mothers like her seems to have the mind set that "THEY don't need anyone and are rasing these children on there own"??….I know for a fact if she wasn't living in our home, our grandaughter would be in daycare at $300-$400 a week from 7-5 in the morning 5 days a week… plus housing & monthly expenses and I know for a fact our daughter WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO AFFORD IT IN HER CURRENT JOB and would need public assistance…most of you single mothers are not doing this on your own…we are!!…AS Grandparents we want our children to take responsibility, and constantly push for it, but we don't want our grandchildren to suffer in poverty and we know with out a doubt our grandaughter would…so we sacrifice…it's a tangled web!….alot of these young people marrying today or having families anyway, as soon as they hit a road block or something isn't to there liking in their relationship.. the word of the day is "it's Not working out"! and they throw in the towel and leave..let me tell ya something folks, if i left my husband everytime he said or did something in 33 years i didn't like, I'd need a jet plane to get back and forth…lol……..what's really sad, these young people today destroy whole families in one fell swope…divorce or walk away and just don't care!..even worse, somehow i think we help create this generation ..and it just makes me sick,

      and we are caught in the middle!

    17. jerry from NC says:

      all you guy's and girl's that voted obama in office because you fell for the change that he was talking about will be sorry that you voted for him you will get change but in the long run you will wish that you heard of the name obama.

    18. Mary, Atlanta says:

      Kind of interesting, then, that red states have much higher divorce rates than blue states. Perhaps it's not "the left" that's lost its respect for marriage.

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