Trends of Family Diversity

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  • Created by: Ruqaiyyah
  • Created on: 06-06-13 21:00

Increase in SINGLE PARENT FAMILIES

Tripled to 24% between 1972 and 2006.

Why? 

Allan & Crow (2001) -

  • Increase in divorce
  • significant rise in the number of never married women.

Death

CHOICE IS A KEY FACTOR IN CONTEMPORARY SOCIETY.

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Increase in FAMILY HOUSEHOLDS

30% increase from 1971 to 2006.

Why?

Growing trend of single person households.

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Decrease in FAMILY SIZE

3.1 people to 2.4 people (1961-2006)

Why?

  • Women's employment - more women are prioritising their careers over having children.
  • Cost of childcare - nearly a quarter of household income (Williams 2006)
  • Lifestyle choice - spending money on other things besides children - consumer society.

Increase in YOUNG ADULTS LIVING WITH THEIR PARENTS.

  • 58% of men & 39% of women aged 20-24 lived with their parents (2006)
  • 8% increase from 1991.

Why?

  • Increase in housing costs
  • Cost of higher education
  • Lack of social housing.
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Increase in COHABITATION

  • 24% of non-married people under 60 cohabited in 2005.
  • Half in 1986.

Why?

  • Decline of "living in sin" stigma
  • Better contraception - couples can live together and have a sexual relationship without worrying about pregnancy. (Allan & Crow 2001)
  • Secularisation - international trend and decline in influence of religion.
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Decrease in MARRIAGE

10% decrease between 2004-2005.

Why?

  • Cohabitation- choosing to cohabit instead of, or prior to, getting married.
  • Choosing to live alone - seen as a positive lifestyle choice.

Increase in PROPORTION OF MARRIAGES THAT ARE REMARRIAGES

  • Rose by a third between 1971-1972
  • 40% of all marriages were remarriages in 2005.

MARRYING LATER IN LIFE

  • 1970s - men marrying at 25. 2006 - men marrying at 31.
  • 1970s - women marrying at 23. 2006 - women marrying at 29.
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Decrease in MARRIAGE (cont'd)

EXPECTATION OF MARRIAGE

Allan & Crow (2001) -

  • expect emotional fulfillment from marriage
  • focus is now on the relationship.

In the past, people might not have had the financial independence to separate from their spouse.

Now, if they are not happy in a relationship, they will not stay together.

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Increase in SINGLE PERSON HOUSEHOLDS.

3 million - 7 million since 1971-2005.

Why?

  • Choosing to live alone - lifestyle choice, gives people freedom to live their lives in their own way. POSTMODERNISTS.
  • Employment patterns changing - more people have to move to find employment and therefore more people are settling down by themselves.
  • Increase in broken marriages & lone parent families - when partners split up, 1 household becomes 2. More single adults live in a household without a partner.
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Increase in DIVORCE

Decrease by 7% between 2005-2006.

Why?

  • Legal changes - changes in divorce laws resulted in more people applying for divorce.
  • Cost - the rich can afford lawyers and the poor can get legal aid.
  • Secularisation - decline in religious beliefs and practices. Therefore, divorce is more acceptable in some cultures.
  • Women's economic independence - as women gain economic independence, their option to leave an unsatisfactory marriage increases.
  • Demographic changes - people live longer and therefore have to work harder to make relationships work. Also, there is potentially more risk of relationships breaking down.
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