Some Statistics for You

Posted by on Jan 5, 2012 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Some Statistics for You

Dear Engaged Couple—

The other day I was in a local coffee shop.  The owner and I are friends.  We talked about my wedding business/passion some,  and then he predicted that this would be a good year for weddings.  “After all,”  he said, “Divorces are down and weddings are up.”  I knew that divorces are down. I’ve heard that on the radio, and read it in print media.  I know, too, that to many peoples’ minds, the slide in divorce rates is a direct result of the recession.  But are marriages on the rise?  This week I scoured the net for information on trends in marriages.  It appears my friend was wrong.  Marriages are not on the rise.  In fact, there has actually been a steady decline in U.S. marriages (and in fact all Western country marriages) since 1980.  (See 

According to what I read, the decline is among people who are low or middle income earners.  College educated couples seem to be getting married at the same rate as in previous years.  Again, this may be due to the recession, although that doesn’t explain why the downturn began in 1980.  These statistics may point to the widening gap between the well-to-do and the less-well-to-do in our nation today.  Many people just can’t afford to get married.     

The fact that there are fewer divorces is reason to celebrate however.  A California family council report (See  states that fewer divorces in this time of financial stress reminds us that marriages are more than just emotional relationships.  Marriages are also economic partnerships.  People may be staying together and trying to work things out because they feel that they have to, to stay solvent.  In the meantime, perhaps their marriages are becoming more stable.  And more stability in marriages translates into more stability in communities.   More information about the recession’s impact on marriage can be obtained from   

As I continued to scour the net, I ran across an article that suggests one VERY GOOD thing  for which the recession may be partly responsible.  That is,  the rise in domestic equality. Today more often than not, married women and men are both contributing members to the family’s income; both feel responsible for the family’s financial well-being; and both are responsible for family chores and raising children.

Those are some general big-scope developments in our country today, but below are some other trends that may be of interest to you as you plan your big day:

1)     More couples are having their weddings at a courthouse, at a residence, or at a chapel

2)    More officiants are performing ceremonies (since more couples are getting married outside the church)

3)    Couples are inviting fewer guests to their weddings—144 rather than 152 in 2010.

4)    Finally, and most positively, 2.3 million couples wed EVERY YEAR in the US which breaks down to 6,200 weddings EVERY DAY! 

That means that although statistics are definitely unromantic, our nation’s citizens  are not!  There may be fewer weddings in our nation today, but A LOT of people are still falling in love and getting engaged and then committing themselves to each other in a meaningful ceremony.  

Happy wedding planning.  Gay Lee  

                                            Elopement in someone’s home–how intimate!

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