Do Two Parents Matter More Than Ever?

“The share of American men and women who think that marriage and a stable family are not important for children in our contemporary world is growing. Either because they adhere to progressive ideas about family diversity, discount the unique value of marriage, or believe that single parents are just as capable of raising children as two parents, more and more Americans seem to think stable marriage is not important for children today.

For instance, from 2006 to 2020, the share of adults who said that it is ‘important’ for unmarried couples who have had a child together to ‘legally marry’ fell from 76% to 60%, as did the share of adults who say divorce is ‘unacceptable’. The 2022 American Family Survey indicates that college-educated liberals are especially likely to discount the value of marriage for children. Specifically, among adults ages 18 to 55, only 30% of college-educated liberals said that children are ‘better off’ with married parents, the lowest share of any group in the survey. By contrast, 91% of college-educated conservatives think that children are better off if they have married parents. But because a majority of college-educated Americans lean left, the drift among more well-educated men and women in the United States has been towards the view that marriage is not important for children.”


Each week, you will receive an email informing you of new essays, podcasts, events and books.