Archives for 2017

How Kindness and Customs Contribute to the Wealth Advantage of People Who Marry: The Example of Weddings

Over the course of a lifetime, single people spend tens of thousands of dollars on the weddings of other people. Their married siblings receive about $20,000 toward their wedding expenses from their parents and parents-in-law. These financial transfers grow out of kindness and customs, but they contribute to wealth inequality between people who marry and […]

The Injustices of Unmarried Life Have Been Named, and the Terms Are Sticking

When I first started studying single life two decades ago, there were no terms for the injustices faced by people who are not married. In fact, one of the most daunting challenges was trying to persuade others that people who are single are targets of stereotyping, stigmatizing, marginalization, and discrimination – or that any such […]

The “Premier Family Form”: Ideology, Shaming, and the Misleading Use of Science

At my “Living Single” blog, I shared the results of the Family Story survey that showed that more than 70 percent of American women believe that a single parent can do just as good a job as two parents. “Research suggests they might be right,” I said. Nicole Rodgers, the director and co-founder of Family […]

New Survey Shows Openness Toward Diverse Family Forms. Will Nondiscriminatory Policies Follow?

One of the joys of 21st century American life is that it is more possible than ever before to follow the life path that suits you best. Nuclear family living is still celebrated, sentimentalized, and rewarded, but it is not even close to being the normative way of life. Just under 20 percent of all […]

Why Unmarried Women, More Often Than Married Women, Vote for Democrats: New Research Suggests a New Answer

Here at Unmarried Equality, we would like all major political parties to take seriously our mission of “fairness and equal treatment of all people regardless of marital status.” If voting patterns are any indication, though, unmarried Americans generally see the Democratic party as more attuned to their concerns than the Republicans.

Social Security Massively Favors Married and Previously Married People

Unmarried Equality members are painfully aware that there are more than 1,000 federal laws that benefit and protect only people who are legally married. The massive favoritism toward married people is especially evident in Social Security.

The Myth that Married People Are Superior: Challenge It at Your Peril

The belief that marriage makes people happier and healthier and better off in all sorts of other ways, too, is entrenched in our thinking. It is not just any old belief, it is an ideology in which Americans (and others) have become deeply invested.

Taxing Singles More Than Couples: It Is Hard to Find a Country with a Bigger Disparity than the U.S.

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) recently released the 2016 income-tax rates for all 35 member countries. Rates were reported separately for two different categories: (1) single people with no children and (2) couples with one earner and two children. MarketWatch described the results under the headline, “Childless, single Americans pay more in […]

Comprehensive Unmarried Equality Must Include Parental Rights for Friends

Unmarried cohabiting couples have often been at the center of the quest for unmarried equality. Legal rights and protections were especially significant before same-sex marriage was legalized nationwide, but the issues are still important even now. No one should have to marry in order to be accorded basic benefits and protections. The matter of unmarried […]

A Victory for Unmarried Cohabiting Couples in a Time of Horrifyingly Discriminatory Proposals

These are frightening times for people who are not married and their children, and even for people who are married but no longer want to be. Lawmakers and political leaders in the US and elsewhere are busy proposing puritanical laws that penalize people for the sin of living single.