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Study: Nearly Half of First Births Are Outside of Marriage

A new, far-reaching study on marriage in America has found that nearly half of all first births (48%) are now outside of marriage. The report, “Knot Yet: The Benefits and Costs of Delayed Marriage in America,” from the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia, also found that the ages at which Americans are marrying (27 for women, and 29 for men) are at historic highs. Highlighted in the report, is what researchers have labeled “The Great Crossover”—the gap between the average age of first birth (25.7) and first marriage. The report’s authors point to a variety of cultural, economic and educational reasons for the shifting trends in having children outside of marriage …

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