Stats & Trends:

Marriage:

85% of the U.S. Population will marry at least once.

(U.S. Bureau of the Census, 2008)

Over 75% of Americans reported a belief that “being married” is an important value. (Popenoe & Whitehead, 2010)

The decline of marriage is our most neglected national emergency. As the marriage rate continues to drop the poverty rate increases. (Time Magazine 2010)

Pre-marital preparation can reduce divorce by 30%. (Stanley, Amoto, Johnson & Markman 2006)

The average couple waits 7 years before seeking help for marital problems (and keep in mind, half of all marriages that end do so in first seven years). This means the average couple lives with unhappiness for far too long. (Dr. John Gottman - Marriage and Relationship Expert)

Researchers have documented the basic relationship skills and knowledge needed to increase the likelihood couples will form and sustain a healthy marriage. (Prepare Enrich Family Facts 2011)

Children:

Evidence shows that children of broken homes are more likely to experience poverty, teen pregnancy, drug and alcohol addiction, depression, reduced educational attainment, decreased longevity and suicidal thoughts. (Why marriage matters, Third Edition)

Children of Cohabiting parents are 9 times more likely to suffer physical, sexual, and emotional abuse if their parents move into cohabiting relationships. (Why marriage matters, Third Edition) 

Children born in stable, intact families with a loving mother and father fare better on almost every measurable outcome. (Why marriage matters, Third Edition)

Divorce and unmarried child bearing are highly related to child poverty. (Rank & Hirschl, 1999)

Health & Longevity:

Research shows that unmarried couples have lower levels of happiness and well-being than married couples. (Popenoe, David and Dafoe Whitehead, Barbara, USA Today, July 2000)

For adults, a stable, happy marriage is the best protector against illness and premature death. Decades of research have clearly established these links. (Burma & Margolin, 1992; Dawson, 1991; Verbrugge, 1979)

Research shows that unmarried couple have lower levels of happiness and well-being than married couples. (Popenoe, David and Dafoe Whitehead, Barbara, USA Today, July 2000)

Spirituality:

Grown children from divorced families are less likely overall to say they are religious, or attend a house of worship regularly, or be leaders in the faith community. (Between two worlds 2007)

As marriage continues to dissolve (45% of 1st marriages & 63% of 2nd marriages) the church feels the impact in attendance, financial income and ministry volunteers.

(Between two worlds 2007)

Whether young or old, male or female, low-income or not, those who said that they were more religious reported higher average levels of commitment to their partners, higher levels of marital satisfaction, less thinking and talking about divorce and lower levels of negative interaction. These patterns held true when controlling for such important variables as income, education, and age at first marriage. (Marriage in Oklahoma - 2001 study)

Effectiveness of Relationship & Marriage Education

Both men and women reported positive impacts from RME attendance, with nearly three-quarters (74%) of participants experiencing increases in problem-solving abilities. (Healthy Relationships California - HRC)

Both unmarried and married participants reported positive impacts from RME attendance, and over half (52%) of highly distressed married participants experienced a significant decrease in relationship distress. (HRC)


Across all income levels, participants experienced positive improvements after participating in RME, most notably in the lowest income bracket (under $15,000). Unmarried participants in this group increased their communication skills by 80%, while married participants from the lowest income bracket saw a 67% increase in these skills. (HRC)

The impact of RME on marital satisfaction endured, with 69% of participants satisfied with their marriage 6 months after the end of their RME source. (HRC)


References: 


WHY MARRIAGE MATTERS, THIRDEDITION: A REPORT FROM FAMILY SCHOLARS, INSTITUTE FOR AMERICAN VALUES NATIONAL MARRIAGE PROJECT 2011 HTTP://NATIONALMARRIAGEPROJECT.ORG/WP-CONTENT/UPLOADS/2012/06/WMM_SUMMARY.PDF

BETWEEN TWO WORLDS: THE SPIRITUAL LIVES OF CHILDREN OF DIVORCE BY ELIZABETH MARQUARDT 2007 - READ BLOG AT HTTP://WWW.HUFFINGTONPOST.COM/ELIZABETH-MARQUARDT/THE-SPIRITUALITY-OF-CHILD_B_798400.HTML

PREPARE ENRICH:  MARRIAGE & FAMILY FACTS 2011 HTTPS://WWW.PREPARE-ENRICH.COM/PE/PDF/RESEARCH/2011/MARRIAGE_AND_FAMILY_FACTS_2011.PDF

FIVE-YEAR STUDY DOCUMENTS THE POSITIVE IMPACT OF RELATIONSHIP AND MARRIAGE EDUCATION PROGRAMS IN CA = READ ENTIRE ARTICLE AT: HTTP://WWW.RELATIONSHIPSCA.ORG/BLOG/2013/06/FIVE-YEAR-STUDY-DOCUMENTS-THE-POSITIVE-IMPACT-OF-RELATIONSHIP-AND-MARRIAGE-EDUCATION-PROGRAMS-IN-CALIFORNIA/