How Have Marriage Rates Changed?

Marriage rates in the United States have gone down by about a half since 1960. In 1960, about 70 percent of Americans were married; now only about 35 percent are. The demographics of marriage are changing as well. In 1960, about two-thirds of American twenty-somethings were married, but as of 2008, only about one-fourth were.

More statistics about marriage:

  • In the late 2000s, eight times more children were born out of wedlock than in 1960.

  • College graduates are generally more likely to marry than those without higher education. About 65 percent of college graduates get married, and a little less than half of those without higher education do.

  • About 70 percent of Americans have been married at some time despite the fact that about 40 percent say they think that marriage is obsolete.
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