A friend and I were guessing the percentage of people who met their spouse in school (high school, college, grad), work, or in some other social context. I figured a Google search would point the way to a broad study on the question: Where do people meet their spouse? Surprisingly, I came up empty. Anyone know of a study based upon a large data set instead of anecdotes?
My Googling did, however, reveal a few other data points about marriage. This page said the median age for marriage for American men is 27 and for women 25 — lower than I expected. I suspect higher socio-economic classes / higher educated folks marry later in life. Also learned that 40-50% of marriages end in divorce in the U.S. Again I suspect it’s lower among higher educated folks.
The issue that seems to be most hotly contested on marriage data sites is around cohabitation — whether premarital cohabitation affects the longevity and quality of a marriage. This study suggests that premarital cohabitation “has consistently been found to be associated with increased risk for divorce and marital distress in the United States.” Why? The inertia of living together causes a couple that would not otherwise marry to marry. Interesting and somewhat counterintuitive.