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Married Couples Drop Below Half of U.S. Households

“The days of Ozzie and Harriet have faded into the past.” This was the comment of William Frey, senior demographer for the 2010 Census speaking to The New York Times, referring to the census’ finding that less than half of all households in the United States are led by married couples. This is the first time this statistic has been officially confirmed, although the proportion of married couples in the U.S. has been declining for the past ten years. The census showed that married couples represented 48 percent of American households in 2010. A total of 41 states showed a decline in traditional household arrangements. Director of the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia W. Bradford Wilcox says this retreat from marriage is a bad sign for America because it indicates a decrease in security for children as they grow up. In 1950, 78 percent of households were led by married couples.   

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Toni Ridgaway is a content editor for the Outreach Web Network, including churchleaders.com and SermonCentral.com.