Many families are coming together to be blended families these days. That’s because 3 out of every 4 people who go through a divorce will eventually get married again. Almost half of all marriages today are at least the second marriage for one of the partners. This means that it is almost as normal for kids to have a step-parent as it is for them to live in a natural two parent home.
65% of remarriages involve children from a prior marriage on at least one side, creating a blending family.
Although coming together as a new family unit is a good thing, it may not end up being a good thing after some time. 60% of marriages that are at least a second marriage for one partner will end up in a legal divorce. Because of this, some families that are blended are choosing to cohabitate instead of get married. The statistics show that 1 out of every 4 blended families is cohabitating.
How Common Are Blended Families Today?
- 1 out of every 3 Americans is either a step-parent, a step-child, or has some other form of a blended family in some way, which means almost 100 million people.
- It is estimated that more than half of all Americans either have been or will be included in a blended family during their lifetime.
- 40% of the married couples with children in the US are forming blended families right now.
- Step-dads are more common than step-moms.
- Americans get married, get divorced, and choose to cohabit more than any other Western society, which accounts for the inflation of many of these numbers.
- 10% of women in the US have had three or more marriages, divorces, or long-term cohabitation arrangements by the age of 35.
- By the age of 15, 3 out of every 10 US kids will have experienced at least two mother partnerships.
The stability of the family unit is what will either make or break a child. This has been shown time and time again, which is why a blended family is a good thing to have. It takes a lot of work and can be extremely frustrating at times, but the rewards of having a solid foundation are worth the effort. With a majority of blended families ending up in divorce, however, the problem of separation and cost continues to weigh in on society. If people are fast to start and stop a relationship, then the focus isn’t on the kids or the family unit. It is on the individual.
What Could Help Blended Families Find More Success?
- Only 1 out of every 3 first marriages will seek out premarital counseling before the wedding, while only 1 in 4 blended family relationships will seek out counseling before the wedding, despite having an average cost of nearly $30k for the big day.
- 1 in 4 Americans has been divorced at some point in their lives and about 10% of the US population is currently divorced.
- For adults, a happy and stable marriage is the best protector against sickness and premature death and is the source of emotional stability and good physical health in children.
- Marriage education is effective in being able to promote the quality and stability of a marriage.
- By 2005, single parent families rose to an all-time high of making up 37% of all households with children.
- Premarital preparation can actually lower the risks of divorce by at least 30%.
- Less than half of all blended families even read articles about what it means to be a step-parent or seek out advice about remarriage.
- Most people will remarry within four years of their divorce and 30% of people remarry within 12 months of being divorce.
Blended families can be extremely successful, but they need tools to be able to succeed. Many people are stubborn and independent and believe that they already know the best way to walk the journey of a blended family. Unfortunately this attitude means that most of those marriages are going to wind up breaking up over time. The need for having two parents in the home has been linked to a number of advantages for the children, so blended families can provide children with a good start. Two-parent households protect children from poverty, provide more behavioral stability, and ultimately helps everyone save money. Family fragmentation will cost the US economy an estimated $1 trillion over the next 10 years.
How Common Are Blended Families Today?
- Every day in the United States, it is estimated that 2,100 blended families will form.
- Younger children are more able to adapt to the blended family structure than older children are and any negative talk about a step-parent by a biological parent can create instant resentment.
- 56% of children have no contact with their biological father in the first year after a divorce and 1 in 4 kids has not had contact in 5 years.
- In an interesting twist, religious pastoral counselors are the least concerned about a divorce when children are involved and that family therapists are the most likely to recommend against a divorce.
- Only 26% of households today have family structures that involve children.
Blended families face a lot of struggles and need a lot of help, but they can make it work. When compared to biological families, blended families are thought to cost companies $10 billion in lost time and added expenses per year. This, however, is just a fraction of the cost that single parent families place on the economy. Sometimes a divorce is the best option because of abuse, neglect, or other family issues that can’t be resolved. What is most surprising, however, is that religious institutions that preach against divorce are the most likely to recommend a divorce when children are involved in a marriage. Blended families are becoming the normal family group. It’s time to give them the resources they need for success.