Divorce Drops, Long-Lasting Marriages Rise: U.S. Census Report


"Americans who don't have a college degree and who are less affluent, working class and poor Americans. They are seeing increases in divorce, they are seeing increases in childbearing, and we're seeing a kind of growing marriage divide in American life," said Wilcox. "More and more couples are having kids outside of marriage in a cohabiting context, and that's why 41 percent of kids today are born outside of marriage in large parts. ... Their kids are more likely to be exposed to a carousel of romantic partners and to suffer as a consequence."

Marriage by the Numbers:

About one third of adults never marry.

Last year, the median age for men in their first marriage was 28, and 26 for women. In 1950 the median age was 23 for men and 20 for women.

In 2009, 31 percent of brides had earned a college degree. In 1996, 21 percent of brides held a college degree.

For women under the age of 45 in their first marriage, about one in ten are in an interracial marriage.

Percent of first marriages that end in divorce: Black women: 49 percent. White women: 41 percent. Hispanic women: 34 percent. Asian women: 22 percent.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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