And so are the people you meet at the bar and that you work with.
At least, they are when it comes to helping you choose your spouse. The graph below shows various ways that people met their spouse from 1940 to 2010.The #1 group helping people meet their spouse in 1940 was family, followed by friends, church, the bar crowd, coworkers, and meeting in college (which was surprisingly last. So much for getting that MRS degree, ladies!). That #1 ranking didn’t even last a decade.
Contrast that to the ranking of groups in 2010. #1 was friends, followed by the bar crowd, online* (which didn’t take off until the Internet was created by Al Gore in the 1980s), coworkers, college, family, and then church.
So what is wrong with this shift in the group who aids in the selection of your spouse?
Compare these 2 graphs closely and you should notice the correlation between the groups who are helping you meet your spouse and the increase in divorce. Since family and church have declined in their role of helping people meet their spouse, the divorce rate has increased. And the current divorce rate of around 50% is evidence that at least half of those who marry are not choosing the best possible spouse.
There may be other factors influencing marriage and divorce. In fact, the incidence of divorce in the United States has been rising since 1913:
Don’t let that decline in divorce between 1993 and 2013 fool you. It’s not so much the result of people marrying and staying together as it is that people aren’t marrying at all.
After all, marriage is the leading cause of divorce.
I could blather on here for a couple thousand more words and bore you to death with the economic explanations and theories for the rise of divorce and decline of marriage in our society. But I have decided not to. Suffice it to say that as family, the church, and God have been removed from society, divorce rates have increased. After all, who typically spends a lot of time in bars?
Cripples, bastards, and broken things…um, I mean alcoholics, drunks and people who like to sleep around. Not exactly the ideal people to pledge your everlasting love to. Johnny knows all about that:
* Online may include the use of ‘dating’ apps like Tinder. And you don’t really want to know what people are doing with them, but it sure isn’t looking for a life partner.