Question 115



It is easy to see the social costs of fault free divorce in a time in our country when there is a 50% divorce rate, many single parent moms, 35% of all babies born to unmarried mothers, and the majority of poor children living in single parent families. 

Researchers have found there are many benefits for men, women and children when couples have a healthy marriage as compared to an unhealthy one. Here are some of the benefits of a healthy marriage. 

Men and women generally are:


Physically and emotionally healthier

Less likely to commit suicide

More satisfied with their relationship

More likely to live longer

 Children are:

Less likely to be raised in poverty

Physically and emotionally healthier

Less likely to abuse drugs or alcohol

Having fewer problems in school

More likely to go to college

Less likely to end up divorced

 Communities have:

Decreased need for social services

Higher rates of educated citizens

Lower domestic violence rates

Lover crime rates

Lower teen pregnancy rates

Lower rates of juvenile delinquency

Higher rates of home ownership

Healthy marriages take hard work and commitment. 

There are many resources out there to help you create and maintain a healthy relationship, including a wonderful Web site from the National Healthy Marriage Resource Center, 

Strong marriages and healthy, happy families, is that not what everyone wants?  From a purely economic standpoint, is that not what every taxpayer wants? 

If we could return to a time when the Churches and the dominant culture emphasize the importance of committed relationships, with reduced emphasis upon the self and self satisfaction, and increased emphasis upon a marriage and family as more important than what pleases either one of the spouses, then certain benefits would happen automatically. 

Children would be happier and more well developed because they receive the attention they need from those who love them most, their parents.  Our costs for social welfare would drastically reduce.  There would be a greater receptivity to the gift of the child, and larger families.

This, in turn, would reduce the pressures upon social security, which is scheduled to go bankrupt in 2037, or sooner.  America would no longer lead the world in incarcerated prisoners, because young men and women would now receive the moral guidance they desperately need from their parents.  Poor families would be pulled out of their plight by parents who are working together to benefit their families. 

Would not all taxpayers be interested in this? 

Cordially yours, 

Fr. Matthew Habiger OSB

Some resources: 

      1) Linda Waite and Maggie Gallagher, The Case for Marriage:  Why Married People are Happier, Healthier and Better Off Financially

      2) Glenn Stanton, Why Marriage Matters:  Reasons to Believe in Marriage in Postmodern Society