Apr 1, 2009

Twenty Somethings in the News: Young men aren't interested in marriage (or, tell me something I didn't know)

I'm never getting marriedHalf of 'twenty-something' men shun relationships

While this is a statement almost any single girl in her 20s could probably tell you without thinking twice, the Gender Institute at the London School of Economics has turned this into a scientific conclusion. Out to prove that the decreasing numbers of 20-somethings joining the married ranks isn't due to 20-somethings cohabitating, the Gender Institute's study found that really, it's because men just aren't interested in getting married. Ever.

Of course, what the Gender Institute didn't really explain was why this is happening. They hypothesize that it might have something to do with the fact that there is no stigma attached to men not settling down these days, but somehow, that doesn't seem like enough to fully explain the trend. Why do you think men are waiting longer to settle down or avoiding it altogether?

14 comments:

  1. I'd like to meet one of these alleged men.

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  2. A man who doesn't want to get married? I know dozens. When would you like to meet them?

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  3. I think it's instinctual and always has been. Society is generally less conservative now a days, so perhaps there is less social pressure for men to get married now.

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  4. My boyfriend is not like the guys described in the article at all. He's always been sort of a dork when it comes to love, even before we were dating, and is probably more excited about getting married and having babies than I am. And out of all my previous boyfriends, about half have been like my current boyfriend, and about half have been like the guys in the article. Do some men just lack the instinct to sew wild oats? Or do you think it could just be a nurtured predisposition toward one social script (marriage and family) or another (strippers and beer)?

    Note: I'm kidding (mostly) about the strippers and beer.

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  5. Isn't there a thing that people are inclined to breed later in life or less when people are living in a time where things are generally too sparse or fucked up to support babie?

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  6. LOL. This article is actually kind of old (like...by 4 years), so I'm not really sure if that was a problem then. Although I think it might be a problem now, even for people who do want to get hitched.

    Maybe some people think the world is too effed to reproduce now (or really ever), but I don't think it's sufficient to describe why so many don't want to. I think most people just don't want to deal with the hassle of babies.

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  7. I think it has mostly to do with the fact that marriage is not the number one priority in a man's life. In our society, I think, women view marriage as a priority. They think about their marriage early on from what season to get married in to the thoughts and ponderings of WHEN will marriage happen. There are men who won't plan to settle down at an early age. They still want to experience life as a single man, and they don't think marriage is something that needs to be rushed in to. They think they have all their lives to finally settle down whereas a woman may not think so.

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  8. I don't know. It seems the opposite where I live...everyone is already married by the time they're 22 around here. It's disturbing.

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  9. I think it's partially because of media which constantly drills down the message that marriage = end of life as you know it, and partially the older men in their lives who have been pathetic enough to let that come true.

    Also: divorce rates, almost total acceptance of pre-marital sex and the cost of getting married, to name a few others.

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  10. Hear, hear. This is why I give up on romance.

    ps. still hooked on impossible overly mushy romantic movies though.

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  11. Men have worked out that the divorce laws are too stacked against them to be worth the risk.

    I am not blaming all women for this, I am just being honest - there is nothing in it for us - maybe some women feel the same for different reasons.

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  12. Men want stability in their personal lives. For an immature man in his 20s, taking on a wife, especially a young wife, and especially these days, means taking on an unknown and unstable quantity, and a relationship is a burden he has to attend to, and something he might lose, when he's struggling to attend to taking care of himself. That's how they see it.

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  13. The last wo comments are correct. There have probably always been two conflicting groups of impulses affecting the decision of young men to marry or hold off: to begin a family of their own, versus being tied down. You see that in movies from long ago, and that really hasn't changed. To accept the responsibility of the family is to accept the risk of not being able to support them, or of the family breaking up.

    It's an unavoidable consequence of women's growing equity of pay that men's ability to care for the family has diminished - even though we almost all accept that has to happen in order for women to receive their fair share.

    However, with divorce rates at 50%, the propsects for "success" are dim. What is the pleasure in watching someone else raise your child, whom you have to ask permission to visit? Or to raise someone with only a tenous connection to you?

    And they say, "it's cheaper to keep her" but an older saying is "why by the cow when the milk is free?", and since women are now fully sexually liberated, it's very free. You can't beat free.

    Couple that with a culture that diminishes and mocks husbands in general, and fathers in particular, and the ideal no longer... is. i think the only men who continue to harbor thoughts of marriage either blissfully imagine they can beat the odds, or accept that they are sentimental fools, and they know it.

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