According to research done by the University of Maryland, women aren’t looking for “marriage material” men anymore, shocking economists. But it’s really not all that shocking. Here’s the thing: The researchers looked into areas that were experiencing an economic “boom” due to fracking, It sounds weird, but actually, back in the 1970s and ’80s whenever and wherever there was a “coal boom,” women apparently clamored to get hitched with some of the men benefiting from their new jobs and raises. Melissa Kearney, one of the lead researchers said, “There was a different response this time, and it’s sobering. The commitment to childbearing with marriage in the ’70s and ’80s is just no longer there.”
That’s because women don’t need men to get ahead socio-economically anymore. Yes, the wage gap is very real, and women don’t have all of the rights that they should, but marriage just doesn’t do what it used to do for women. Women can be single, successful in their career, raise children, or choose not to have kids, all alone, and without being punished (too much) by society. Decades ago, that really wasn’t the case.
It’s not that surprising that women are choosing to skip marriage. They don’t need it.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 40 percent of children in the United States are born to unmarried women, although 62 percent of single moms don’t have a college degree. For that reason, there are a bunch of think tanks dedicated to figuring out how to “encourage marriage,” since studies show that married parents tend to have higher median incomes. Well, duh. That’s because there’s two people working. Instead of focusing on how to recreate the old “booms,” maybe we’d all be better off trying to find ways to make life simpler for single mothers so that they could finish degree programs or get hardcore about their careers without having to worry about affording childcare or groceries.
Back in the day, women couldn’t even get a credit card without a man’s permission. No one wants to live in that world