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The Case for Marriage: Why Married People are Happier, Healthier and Better Off Financially Paperback – October 9, 2001
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So, what does threaten marriage? For one, the insecurity engendered by the cultural acceptance of divorce. Couples are now less willing to invest fully in each other, the authors write, while "commitment produces contentment; uncertainty creates agony." Cultural indifference towards marriage is the other big downer. Because marriage is a public commitment, it can "work its miracles only if it is supported by the whole society." Not surprisingly, divorce gets a very bad rap as Waite and Gallagher pull out the heavyweight facts, particularly when it comes to its effect on children. The good news, though, is that marriage is resilient--five years down the road most couples who considered but resisted divorce found that they were happy again. Since Americans are still the marrying kind despite the cynicism, fear, and laissez-faire attitudes, The Case for Marriage makes a reassuring and compelling case for keeping on keeping on. --Lesley Reed --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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The authors debunk many myths about marriage to reveal that married people report being happier overall and more satisfied with their sex lives. Married persons also earn more, are in better physical and mental health, and have more well-adjusted and successful children. Waite and Gallagher explain the how and why for these results by translating social science theories into layman's terms and weaving in illustrative anecdotes from research interviews.
While 93% of Americans rank "having a happy marriage" as a priority, sadly, we are increasingly pessimistic about our chances of achieving that goal. Most of us are either scared by divorce statistics, lack healthy marriage role models, or don't fully understand the benefits of marriage, among other reasons. This fear also translates into an unfortunate self-fulfilling prophesy of failure. By entering into marriage fearing divorce, if we are even willing to make the leap, we do not make the investments required to produce successful marriages.
To address the challenges for healthy and lasting marriages, the authors make specific recommendations to policymakers, religious leaders, researchers, and anyone touched by marriage as to how to build a more "marriage-friendly America." They are careful not to invoke any particular political or religious ideology. They simply examine the evidence to provide what they perceive to be the logical next steps. Perhaps readers will come up with additional suggestions.
It turns out the reason we're so stupid about marriage - and divorce like lemmings -- is that we've been operating on woefully inaccurate information. For 30 years, the experts have told us that marriage makes no difference. Or worse! -- that our kids will be "just fine" without it - that they do just as well in single-parent or remarried families. We've been told (in graduate school, no less!) that women are better off single than married. None of which is true!
We should be outraged! We've been making our decisions based on a barge load of myth and misinformation. NO WONDER marriage is at an all time low and divorce is rampant. We've had a 50% divorce rate for 30 years - and it turns out it's not our fault. Who knew!
"The Case for Marriage" sets the record straight. It turns out that marriage makes a huge difference in the health, wealth and wellbeing of men, women and children. And as for women and those "sex in the city" girls -- they'd be better off married on everything researchers can measure including less violence, more money, more successful kids, and more -- and more satisfying -- sex. Yep, sex is better for BOTH married men and married women than their single friends who are racing around looking for it.
The authors summarise the data from the social sciences in this fashion: "The evidence is in, at least for the ways in which marriage is practiced today: Both men and women gain a great deal from marriage. True, marriage does not affect men and women in exactly the same way. Both men and women live longer, healthier, and wealthier lives when married, but husbands typically get greater health benefits from marriage than do wives. On the other hand, while both men and women get bigger bank accounts and a higher standard of living in marriage, wives reap even greater financial benefits than do husbands. Overall, the portrait of marriage that emerges from two generations of increasingly sophisticated empirical research on actual husbands and wives is not one of gender bias, but gender balance: A good marriage enlarges and enriches the lives of both men and women."
A few examples (of many) can be noted: Unmarried people (be they widowed, divorced or single) are far more likely to die from all causes of death, including cancer, coronary heart disease, stroke and pneumonia. Married men are only half as likely as bachelors, and about one-third as likely as divorced men to take their own lives.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It's appropriately titled in that the authors stick to making their case for marriage throughout the book. And it seems they do a great job of defending their position. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Sharon Olson
Mandatory reading if you love your wife and what to maintain a healthy marriage.Published 4 months ago by al poledri
Have a dictionary present while reading. I'm not an advanced reader so I have to read it a little slower to get the gist. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Alisha
very informative. will use it in my private counseling practice and reference in my book on dealing with relationship conflicts.Published 16 months ago by Gerald J. Manney
This is a really interesting book. It takes statistics- which at time can be dry- and makes a compelling case for marriage. Read morePublished 19 months ago by Amazon Customer
Good review of what is taking place not only in America, but globally with marriage.Published 19 months ago by Fletcher Sanders