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In 2011, the US Census Bureau reported, that percentage had dropped to 48 percent.In 2014, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 124.6 million Americans 16 years and older were single, or 50.2 percent of the population, compared with 37.4 percent of the population in 1976. One of the big ones has to do with when Americans get married.“Just as marriages are no longer alike, singleness is no longer all alike,” says Stephanie Coontz, director of research and public education at the Council on Contemporary Families.Understanding the various facets of the new Singles Nation, it turns out, is key to understanding much about America today.Hugh Ryan is considered single, as well, even though he lives with two other men in New York, and the three consider themselves a family. Once you recognize that the two-parent, two-kid family that married at 22 and are together till the end of their lives is a rarity these days, everything else seems less unusual.”Denison, for her part, describes herself as “single – sort of.” She has been in a number of relationships since she moved to Boston, some long term, some decidedly short. Two generations ago, this would have been highly atypical.(They recently bought a house in Brooklyn together.)“We have the same stupid fights and the same wonderful stuff as in any relationship,” Mr. A female college graduate getting an apartment on her own would have been seen as indecorous.For years, the average age at which both men and women first marry has been creeping upward, to 27 for women and 29 for men. In other words, there may at any given moment be more single people who have never been married, but that doesn’t mean that those singles are going to stay that way.But this seemingly simple demographic explanation belies a huge shift in culture.
In 1950, married couples represented 78 percent of households in the United States.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.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.
“It’s just the opposite of the stereotype.”Quite often, she says, single people realize that they enjoy living without a spouse.