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The Phenomenon of Cohabitation

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The word “cohabitation” has just recently had an explosion in the nuclear mindset of today’s people. As one researcher states in an article of Psychology Today, “Cohabitation is here to stay.” The studies he conducted were focused on just on US but a range of countries seem to follow the same pattern of major changes to cohabitation (Taibbi). Unlike marriage where a couple is immediately thrown together to provide a stable revenue and contribute to one another which can go positively or very negatively, cohabitation is becoming a standard procedure to check off your list to see if one can actually survive with their partner.

The process for cohabitation has increased to significant numbers, in fact given by Unmarried Equality which looked at the data on the 2010 American Census said on their statistics page in 2010, 45 percent of all households in the United States were unmarried households. They also say how unmarried Americans contribute more than $2 trillion to the economy which means this term coined cohabitation is not a negative influence on both the traditional way of being together, but also doesn’t create big problems for the economy of the U.S.

Although many researchers would argue that marriage seems to produce more rights and acknowledgement for a relationship, cohabitation is what more people are choosing due to a new tradition of living and prerequisites that couples feel that they must meet before marriage is in the picture. Cohabitation is a better way to maintain a healthier relationship and provide better quality between the couple. The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, a convention dedicated to engaging the culture with the gospel of Jesus Christ and speaking to issues in the public square for the protection of religious liberty and human flourishing, discusses the background of cohabitation and some of the ethical alarms that are sent when cohabitation is brought up. The ethical significance within this argument is given by organizations like this that are religious or traditional.

As they state on their page “Marriage is a commitment. It is a commitment to have and hold through sickness and in health. There is a weight of responsibility to another when you sign the dotted line and make it official. But it’s much more than a commitment. It is a covenant” and they believe cohabitation is breaking this sacred covenant therefore creating an ethical argument. The Ethics and religious Liberty Commission also discuss how Cohabitation isn’t a new phenomenon among unmarried couples but it has grown significantly in the past 15 years. “Using data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics, they claimed that 48% of women between the ages of 15 and 44 moved in with a man for the first time. That number had risen from 34% in 1995 to 43% in 2002” (Newbell).

The data given shows the expansion and growth of cohabitation over the years and shows trends that the tendency to cohabit will keep rising. In another article given by Carol Breit, an attorney at law for the Richmond, Virginia area, writes in an article about the growth of cohabitation and how “By 2000, 5.5 million couples were living together” and 40% of these couples had kids and started a family. These findings by Dr. Breit show that cohabitation isn’t only taking over traditional marriage but is also creating a way for families to begin.

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