The Effects of Pre-martial Cohabiation on Martial Quality and Stability Essay

The Effects of Pre-martial Cohabiation on Martial Quality and Stability Essay

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Since the 1970’s cohabitation has steadily increased, the cohabiting rate has increased to approximately 5 million people (U.S. Census 2001). According to Murrow and Shi (2010), over the years cohabitation has become part of the social norm. Some people in society defy this notion for moral and religious beliefs. In response to the increasing rate, cohabitation has become part of the social norm. Researchers have examined the effects cohabitation has on relationships and the side effect's couples may have who do cohabitate, eventually committing to marriage. According to a study on these links Brown, Sanchex, Nock, and Wright (2006), found couples who do cohabite in order to test the stability of his or her relationship before committing to marriage experienced an unstable marriage and in the end divorced compared to couples who did not cohabite before marriage.
The following paper will look at twenty three studies and analyses of pre-martial cohabitation and the effects it has on the martial quality and stability of the relationship. The research will illustrate nuptial instability and a decrease in marital quality due to the effects cohabitation has on the couples. In addition, the research presented will show selection factors and characterizes of the individuals who chose to cohabitation, which causes a decline in marital instability and quality. Furthermore, identify limitations on both sides of the issue. Also, examine cohabitation, martial quality, and stability through the lens of Family Systems Theory to better understand the issue. It will concluding with identifying which side of the issue is greatly supported by the evidence and why it is best supported. As a result from this paper the reader will gain knowledge on c...


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...p quality. Journal of Family Issues, 30(2), 233-258. doi:10.1177/0192513X08324388
Rhoades, G. K., Stanley, S. M., & Markman, H. J. (2012). The impact of the transition to cohabitation on relationship functioning: Cross-sectional and longitudinal findings. Journal of Family Psychology, 26(3), 348-358. doi:10.1037/a0028316
Smith, S. R., & Hamon, R. R. (2012). Exploring family theories. (3rd ed., p. 146). Oxford University Press: Oxford University Press Inc.
Teachman, J. D., & Polonko, K. A. (1990). Cohabitation and marital stability in the United States. Social Forces, 69(1), 207-220.

Thomson, E., & Colella, U. (1992). Cohabitation and marital stability: Quality or commitment? Journal of Marriage and the Family, 259-267.
Woods, L. N., & Emery, R. E. (2002). The cohabitation effect on divorce: Causation or selection? Journal of Divorce and Remarriage, 37(3/4), 101.

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