“You can be single in Boston and nobody really cares.I’ve never felt the pressure here to get married.”Indeed, if there is any “normal” in the shifting, complicated world of American relationships, it arguably looks a lot more like Denison than her childhood friends who wed at 21.
In small-town Minnesota, marriage was just what people did. Today, almost two decades, hundreds of dates, and untold hours on OKCupid later, Ms.
Denison, who moved to Boston when she was 26, lives in a far different reality.“There are tons of single people in Boston,” she says.
Last year, for the first time, the number of unmarried American adults outnumbered those who were married.
One in 7 lives alone – about 31 million compared with 4 million in 1950 – and many of those are clustered in urban centers.
When Karin Denison was in her early 20s, it seemed that all her peers were coupling up and planning to live happily ever after.
She spent the summers after college driving to friends’ weddings, she recalls.
But even outside cities, there is a distinct rise of the “single.” Almost half of new births are to unmarried mothers.
The number of parents living together but not married has tripled.
Four in 10 Americans went ever further, telling Pew researchers in 2010 that marriage was becoming obsolete.