Why Public Officials Should Support Marriage ... - Smart Marriages

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16 Νοε 2013 (πριν από 3 χρόνια και 8 μήνες)

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Marriage

Public Policy

Why Public Officials Should

Support Marriage

By James E. Sheridan

Single vs. Married Men



“Single men who are heading toward marriage
reduce

their drinking up to a year before the
ceremony, so that although they start with the
same heavy drinking patterns as their friends who
stay single, by the time they marry they drink
much less than they did a year earlier….



“Apparently young men’s values change as they
move from bachelors to husbands, with the
change taking place gradually as they develop a
closer relationship with the woman they will
marry.”


(
The Case For Marriage
, Waite and Gallagher)

Single vs. Married Men (2)


“Young men who were light drinkers,
moderate drinkers and heavy drinkers
prior to marrying,
all

drink less after they
marry than they did before (Bachman,
Wadsworth, O’Malley, Honson, and
Schulenberg, 1997; Miller
-
Tutzauer et al.,
1991). This evidence says…that marriage
causes

these changes in men’s behavior.
Getting married moves men away from
destructive and unhealthy drinking
behavior and towards moderation or
abstinence.”
(
The Case For Marriage
, Waite and Gallagher)

Single vs. Married Men (3)


And, it’s not just alcohol. “Both young
men and women smoked less,…and
snorted less cocaine,” during the year
before marriage. Marijuana use, which
tends to drop after high school anyway,
drops 2 to 3 times more rapidly for those
who marry compared to those who do not.


(
The Case For Marriage
, Waite and Gallagher)

Married and Engaged Couples
are Less Likely to be Violent


3
-
4% of married couples



11
-
12% of engaged cohabitors



13
-
15% of “disengaged” cohabitors



Tabulations from the National Survey of Families and Households, 1987
-
88

Dr. Linda Waite:

“The research clearly shows that,

outside
of hying thee to a nunnery,
the safest
place for a woman is inside marriage.”





(
The Case For Marriage
, Waite and Gallagher,
page 152
)





Married Women are Safer

Single and divorced women:



4
-
5

times more likely to be victims of
crimes of violence.


10

times more likely to be raped


3

times more likely to be victims of
aggravated assault than wives.





(
The Case For Marriage
, Waite and Gallagher
, page 152
)





Married Men are Safer

Bachelors are 4 times more likely to be
victims of crimes of violence than
husbands.











(
The Case For Marriage
, Waite and Gallagher
, page 152
)




Fatal Abuse of Children

in Canadian study:




Children two years of age and
younger

are
70 to 100 times more likely
to be killed

at the hands of their
stepparents than by their biological
parents. (Younger children, because of
their small size, are much more
vulnerable.)


The Heritage Foundation, Backgrounder

Fatal Abuse of Children

in British study:



“The data from Britain predict a smaller
risk, but this research is not as rigorous as
the Canadian study. The British study
reports that
fatal abuse of children of all
ages

occurs
three times

more frequently
in stepfamilies than in intact married
families.”



The Heritage Foundation, Backgrounder

Neglected Children



“Neglect of children…is
twice as high

among separated and divorced parents.”




The Heritage Foundation, Backgrounder

Rate of Sexual Abuse

of Girls




The rate of sexual abuse of girls

by
their stepfathers is at
least six or seven
times higher
…than sexual abuse of
daughters by their biological fathers who
remain in intact families.”



The Heritage Foundation, Backgrounder

Families in the U.S. where the
father is absent make up:


63% of youth suicides


71% of all high school dropouts


75% of all adolescent substance abuse
patients


70% of juveniles in state
-
operated
institutions.


The Critical Importance Of Responsible Fatherhood
, Murray Davis, Chairman, Dad’s
of Michigan, to the Joint House Committee Hearings, November 5, 2001, Detroit,
Michigan



Families in the U.S. where the
father is absent make up:


85% of all persons incarcerated in
prisons


85% of children exhibiting behavior
disorders


90% of all homeless and runaway
children


The Critical Importance Of Responsible Fatherhood
, Murray Davis, Chairman,
Dad’s of Michigan, to the Joint House Committee Hearings, November 5,
2001, Detroit, Michigan




Absent Biological Father

And Criminal Behavior



“A (1998) U.S. longitudinal study which
tracked over 6,400 boys over a period of
20 years (well into their adult years) found
that
children without biological fathers

in the home are
roughly three times
more likely

to commit a crime that leads
to incarceration than are children from
intact families.”





The Heritage Foundation, Backgrounder, page 6

Impact on Daughters



“Daughters raised outside of intact
marriages are approximately three times
more likely to end up young, unwed
mothers than are children whose parents
married and stayed married.”





Why Marriage Matters, page 3

Dr. Judith Wallerstein:



“Early sex was very common among girls
in the divorced families and has been
described in several national studies. In
our study, one in five had her first sexual
experience before the age of 14. Over half
were sexually active with multiple partners
during their high school years. In the
comparison group, the great majority of
girls postponed sex until the last year of
high school or their early years of college.”




The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce, Judith Wallerstein, PhD, p. 189

Children with Married Parents

Do Better


Half as likely to drop out of high school



More likely to go to college & to graduate



Half as likely to have a teen birth



Less likely to have emotional problems

Children in Poverty

Children 0
-
6 Years Old Living in Poverty:


Overall



1 in 10 live in poverty


Living in



1 in 3 live in poverty

Female
-
headed

Households


Environmental Scan of Lenawee County (MI), Lenawee United Way and Volunteer Center, 2003

Is Poverty

a “Selection Effect”?


Women with a first premarital pregnancy
leading to birth experienced a poverty rate
of…


Those with “shotgun” weddings


20%

Those who did not marry



47%




(CLASP Policy Brief, Couples and Marriage Series, Brief No. 3, P. 5)

“Selection Effect” (2)

Divorce and unmarried childbearing
increase poverty for both children and
mothers.


“Child poverty rates are very high
primarily because of growth of single
-
parent families.


“Selection Effect” (3)



When parents fail to marry and stay
married, children are more likely to
experience deep and persistent poverty
,
even after controlling for race and family
background.

“Selection Effect” (4)

The majority of children who grow up outside
of intact married families experience at
least one year of dire poverty (family
incomes less than half the official poverty
threshold). Divorce as well as unmarried
childbearing plays a role:
Between one
-
fifth and one
-
third of divorcing women
end up in poverty following the
divorce.”






Why Marriage Matters
, page 9

Graduation Rate

(Nationally)




High School



88%




4 Years of College


25.6%



Environmental Scan of Lenawee County (MI), Lenawee United Way and Volunteer
Center, 2003, page 15

Graduation Rates (2)


Studies have linked graduation rates to
the number of times a child moves while
attending school, with one move
decreasing the average graduation rate
to 68%, two moves to 56%, and three
moves to 30%.



Environmental Scan of Lenawee County (MI), Lenawee United Way and Volunteer Center, 2003,
page 15


Graduation Rates Linked

to Household Moves


The number of times a child moves while
attending school
decreases

the graduation rate
from high school:



Number of Moves

Rate Reduces To



1




68%



2




56%



3




30%


Environmental Scan of Lenawee County (MI), Lenawee United Way and Volunteer Center, 2003, page 15

Life Expectancy of

Adult Children of Divorce



The parents’ divorce lowered the life
expectancy of the adult children by 4
years.



“Forty
-
year
-
olds from divorced homes
were three times as likely to dire from
all causes as forty
-
year
-
olds whose
parents stayed married.”





(
The Case For Marriage
, Waite and Gallagher)


Adult Children from

Divorced Parents are:


70% more likely to have circulatory
problems


56% more likely to show signs of mental
illness


27% more likely to report chronic aches
and pains


26% more likely to rate their overall health
as poor





(
The Case For Marriage
, Waite and Gallagher)


Stability in Children’s Lives

By Family Makeup


Children living with both biological parents
at birth compared to the percent of children
who will not be living with biological parents
after…






1 Year


5 Years

10 Years

Cohabiting Parents


15%


50%


66%


Married Parents


4%


15%


33%





(
The Case For Marriage
, Waite and Gallagher)



Number of Alcohol
-
Related
Problems

0
0.1
0.2
0.3
0.4
0.5
0.6
0.7
0.8
0.9
1
Divorced
Widowed
Married
Men
Women
SOURCE: Umberson (1987)


Figure 5. Reports of Problem Drinking in the Past Year, by Marital Status and Sex

Physical Aggression During

Arguments

(NSFH 1987
-
1988)

0
0.02
0.04
0.06
0.08
0.1
0.12
0.14
0.16
Married
Cohabiting with
Plans to Marry
Cohabiting, No
Plans
Male to Female
Female to Male
Net of the effect of education, gender of respondent, age, race, and ethnicity

In Britain, the Serious Abuse of Children in
Stepfamilies Was Six Times More Likely than
for Children of Intact Married Families

0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
Biological
Parents Married
Mother Married
to Stepfather
Biological
Mother Alone
Biological
Parents
Cohabiting
Biological
Father Alone
Biological
Mother
Cohabiting
Family Structure
Comparative Risk Ratios for Serious Abuse, 1982
-
1988

Note: No U.S. data by family structure available

Source: Robert Whelian,
Broken Homes and Battered Children
, 1994.

In Wisconsin, Juvenile Incarceration Rates for
Children of Divorced Parents are 12 Times

Higher than for Children in Two
-
Parent Families

0
5
10
15
20
25
Two-Parent
Family
Married Parents,
Currently
Separated
Single Parent,
Divorced
Single Parent,
Never Married
Juvenile Incarceration Rate, Two
-
Parent Family Rate = 1

Source: Heritage calculations, based on 1993 data from Wisconsin Department of Health
and Human Services and U.S. Bureau of the Census,
Current Population Survey
.

Percent of Families with Children

Living in Poverty by Family Structure

0.00%
10.00%
20.00%
30.00%
40.00%
50.00%
60.00%
First
Marriage
Step
Family
Cohabiting
Couple
Widowed
Divorced /
Separated
Single
Parent
Never-
Married
Single
Parent
Source: Heritage Center for Data Analysis calculations based on data from 1995
Survey of


Consumer Finance
, Federal Reserve Board.

Poverty Rates

0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
45
50
All
Whites
Blacks
Two-parent families
One-parent families
SOURCE: McLanahan and Sandefur (1994:82)


Figure 14. Percentages of Children in Poverty at Age 16, by Race and Family Structure

Impact of Divorce on Income

of Families with Children

$0
$10,000
$20,000
$30,000
$40,000
$50,000
Two-Parent Household Before
Divorce
Custodial Parent Household After
Divorce
1993 Average Annual Income

Source: Mary E. Corcoran and Ajay Chaudray, “The Dynamics of Childhood Poverty,”
Future of Children
, 1997.

Median Household Wealth of

Persons Aged 51
-
61, by Marital Status

$0
$20,000
$40,000
$60,000
$80,000
$100,000
$120,000
$140,000
Married
Widowed
Never
Married
Divorced
Separated
1993 Household Capital Wealth

Source: James P. Smith,
Marriage, Assets and Savings
, Rand Corporation, 1995.

Percentages of Dropouts

0
5
10
15
20
25
30
NLSY
PSID
HSB
NSFH1
NSFH2
Two-parent families
One-parent families
SOURCE: McLanahan and Sandefur (1994:41)


Figure 13. Percentages of Adult Children Who Did Not Complete High School by


Childhood Family Structure

Cohabitation Rates of Young Adults by
Parents’ Marital Status

0%
10%
20%
30%
40%
50%
60%
Age 20
Age 23
Age 26
Intact Stable Parent Marriage
Unstable Parental Marriage
Divorced Parents
Percent Ever Cohabited

Age of Young Adults

Source: Paul Amato and Alan Booth,
A Generation at Risk
, 1997, p. 112.

Married Women Live Longer

0.6
0.7
0.8
0.9
1
48
50
52
54
56
58
60
62
64
65
Married
Widowed
Divorced
Never Married
Probability of Survival

Age

Lillard, L.A., & Waite, L.J. (1995). “Til Death Do Us Part: Marital Disruption and Morality.”


American Journal of Sociology, 100
, 1131
-
1156

So Do Married Men

0.6
0.7
0.8
0.9
1
48
50
55
60
65
Married
Widowed
Divorced
Never Married
Probability of Survival

Age

Lillard, L.A., & Waite, L.J. (1995). “Til Death Do Us Part: Marital Disruption and Morality.”


American Journal of Sociology, 100
, 1131
-
1156