Men are Abstaining…from Marriage: 6 Reasons Why Men Should Not Get Married [Video]

fear of commitment

An SBM reader recently shared a video that they came across on author Helen Smith’s book titled, Men on Strike: Why Men Are Boycotting Marriage, Fatherhood, and the American Dream—and Why It Matters. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then the video speaks for itself.

A brief synopsis: taking an incentive-based analysis – the doctor presumes men are opting out of marriage at higher rates because the incentives to marry in the present are less motivating than they were in the past – she provides six reasons why men are avoiding marriage:

1. They’ll Lose Respect
2. They’ll Lose Out on Sex
3. They Can Lose Their Children and Their Money
4. They Can Lose Their Space
5. They Can Lose Their Freedom
6. The Single Life is Better than Ever

Check out the video for a more detailed explanation of each.

Do you think these are the six main reasons why men (and women) are marrying less often or later? What other factors did the Doctor leave out? Do you think marriage rates will continue their decline as more and more young people opt out of marriage completely or until later in age? In your opinion, why should men (or women) still choose to get married?

From Our Partners

  • Adonis

    Can a negro get an amen. She mirrored my exact sentiments.

    I still will participate in the marriage hustle as long as the benefits greatly outweigh the risks.

    For most unsuspecting men, the marriage game will chew them up & spit them out

    And it is nice when an EDUCATED WOMAN speaks the truth.

  • Chocolate Vent

    Actually #4 & #5 are pretty much the same thing. And #6 is just summing it all up and not an actual reason.

    I do think marriage rates will continue to decline but I think that's because of the "fall of man" from a Biblical perspective. This is just a consequence to mans disobedience to God.

    But I digress, men & women should choose to get married because it's better for the economy & our children. Plain & simple There is no better or more truthful answer than that. Studies show time & time again that children fare better in a 2-parent home. And people are less likely to leave when their finances are in jeopardy
    BOOM!
    My recent post READERS: Question of the Day – Lifetime Supply of What?

    • bellatrice1

      +1000

    • High_Five_Ghost

      "fall of man…This is just a consequence to man’s disobedience to God.”

      Sadly nothing is that simple. Quotes like these ask for nothing short of utopia, which even according to the bible, never existed. Even in the Garden of Eden, the devil was still around effin with folks…unless that’s your idea of utopia.

      Instead of “umbrella reasoning”, we should find solution to multi-faceted HUMAN issues. The list above is not complete but at least it assigns REAL life decisions based on multi-faceted social issues. Religious views are a good thing but when they are used as a social diagnostic tool they fall short because they only consider humanity as a whole and not the actual choices (which we have (biblically speaking) that individuals make.

  • Smilez_920

    I mean marriage isn’t a walk in the park for women either, we lose out on just as much when we marry the wrong person. When you’re marrying the wrong person, those reason come into play. I mean think of how many men get divorced only to get remarried later in life? I think my generation still believes in marriage and with Gay marriage being legalized in some states (and more to come) I think the marriage rates will increase.

    I personally think marriage isn’t for everyone; a decrease in marriage rates isn’t bad if the people not getting married shouldn’t be getting married in the first place.

    I believe that my generation will wait longer to have children and get married. I mean money does factor in to marriage and having children. I feel like more black professionals will start to wait until their 30’s to have children and start families, which isn’t a bad thing.

    • Smilez_920

      One more thing; this new generation of men and women will probably be a “prenup” generation. With women making more money, I think people on both sides in some cases are starting to see prenups as a safety net, just in case instead of a jinx on their marriage (even if they’re not millionaires.) This may encourage more men to get married.

    • Bree

      "I personally think marriage isn’t for everyone; a decrease in marriage rates isn’t bad if the people not getting married shouldn’t be getting married in the first place." This right here is Truth.Org

  • rena215

    Women who want to get married need to be a lot smarter with the men they choose to spend time and have sex with. They should know up front whether family and marriage are priorities for them.

  • rena215

    Here's another interesting point I read in the Atlantic re: America's marriage crisis. The decline in marriage rates is occurring almost exclusively among the poor, so that marriage is becoming "a capstone for the privileged class."

    Those who are doing well financially still know that marriage is the best way to raise successful and educated children and build generational wealth.

    Here's the link to the article: http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/

    • amaris79

      This. With the exception of #3 (and only the children aspect of it), those reasons are actually more applicable to women. Statistically women are less likely to marry the partner they deemed the "best lover", have exponentially higher rates of bankruptcy post-divorce, report lower levels of sexual satisfaction and general health overal…and considering women are more likely to move into a man's house than the reverse, I have no idea how men view their "space and freedom" infringed upon. Add to that the tax and generational wealth-building aspects of keeping the family under one roof and I have no idea whyit seems to have such a negative view for men.
      My recent post StyleWatch; Evelyn Lozada Launches Vida Lux Cosmetics!

    • Bree

      I agree rena and thats a great point that is missed. The economical demographic and how it relates to this topic.
      Definitely people who are in a higher tax bracket, with good credit tend to get married more and more quickly than people with really bad credit and who are making minimum wage or just above the poverty level. Only exception to this is when people are really young and fresh out of highschool or college.
      Once folks get in their mid 20's if they aren't already locked into a serious marriage bound relationship, they are usually working on their careers. Especially men. Men are almost always preparing financially for married life. Ones that do want to be married anyway.

  • larnelw

    My feelings towards her synopsis:

    1. They’ll Lose Respect
    – You aren’t much of a man if your decisions in life are based off your “boys” respect.

    2. They’ll Lose Out on Sex
    – If you are fool enough to marry a woman that doesn’t really desire or enjoy sex that frequently then that is your fault. But to the man who chooses wisely you are talking about dang near pr0nographic, freaky nasty sex within arms reach and on tap. No modesty. No inhibitions. No her worrying about feeling like a wh0re or you telling your boys.
    PLUS….married vagina is like a new shoe with custom orthotics. Casual vagina is like rental shoes from the bowling alley. The fit is never right.

    • larnelw

      3. They Can Lose Their Children and Their Money
      – Yeah okay. Have sex with enough women in your life and you are most definitely going to slip one past the goalie. Then you will have a baby mother, a child most likely not living with you and an extra bill each month.

      4. They Can Lose Their Space & 5. They Can Lose Their Freedom
      – These two are eeeehhh. You do lose a bit of space and freedom. You of course need to share a bit of that with your spouse now. BUT if you are in a serious relationship (pre-marriage) it really isn't that different. Actually to some extent you have to share MORE space with a girlfriend then a wife. Because you live with this woman, you wake up to this woman, the two of you will make it a duty to take your own personal space and freedom to hang with friends or do your own thing.
      But as compared to being single and have no accountability to anyone….yeah there is a big difference.

      6. The Single Life is Better than Ever
      – Only benefit is the endless opportunity to pursue "something new". Its in our human nature to always crave something new in every aspect. Being single allows that search for the "new" woman to attain without any repercussion. But past that I prefer married life over anything else single life has to offer.

  • payne well

    As times change so should how we select our mates. When many view mates for the superficial reason (looks, money, status, etc) but not making sure that core values are in alignment, then more divorces are more likely to fail. Women are settling because we hear out internal clock ticking, men are settling because they think it's time to settle down or she's just that beautiful. Love is not enough in a marriage, but it is a good start. Also people are not willing to work on marriages to keep them healthy. Anything worth having you have to work at, having a nice body, a good career, whatever you deem worthy. People get into marriages and for some reason forget that work is required in that arena as well.
    My recent post When I’m gone:The importance of after life planning

    • High_Five_Ghost

      "Love is not enough in a marriage, but it is a good start."

      …….nice

  • Bree

    Do you think these are the six main reasons why men (and women) are marrying less often or later?
    Yes people who at first say they don't want to get married and/or those who say they will never get married defnitely site these as their reasons.
    What other factors did the Doctor leave out? The fact that there are some who want to live their life on their own terms and their own way. They want the right to be selfish. They don't want to be responsible for anyone but themselves. They don't want to share anything with anyone unless they choose to. They just don't want the "grown up" responsibilities that come with marriage and children.
    Do you think marriage rates will continue their decline as more and more young people opt out of marriage completely or until later in age?

    • High_Five_Ghost

      "They want the right to be selfish. They don't want to be responsible for anyone but themselves. They don't want to share anything with anyone unless they choose to. They just don't want the "grown up" responsibilities that come with marriage and children. "

      …well damn. lil judgmental …….no?

      • amaris79

        I actually think Bree described it quite accurately. I have a lot of friends that reply "I can barely handle myself" when asked if they want kids. Shoot, I even knoiw a few men WITH kids that say this, and are eternally grateful for the maturity of their child's mother. considering this is not the economy of our parents and there is no such thing as guaranteed employment, income, career or a retirement plan anymore, I can understand it.
        My recent post StyleWatch; Evelyn Lozada Launches Vida Lux Cosmetics!

        • High_Five_Ghost

          Her points are well received…well that is until words like “selfish’ and phrases like, “they just don't want the "grown up" responsibilities”. That’s where the judgmental ish begins. I can make the case for selfishness and immaturity in cases of people who choose to get married (no need, ‘cause we all know some examples)

          Her judgments lie on an outdated idea that these things (marriage & kids) define you as an adult. I disagree. I contend that self-aware-ness and the ability to make well thought out choices is a far better barometer for adulthood. Bree displays faulty logic. Sure, I know some immature people that don’t marry for childish reasons but I also know fat kids that eat cake but I’m judgmental enough to say that eating cake made them fat.

        • Bree

          High-Five, of what I learned were thee most important things to sustain a long lasting marriage from people who were married longer than I've been alive it was thesee things:
          1. You cannot be selfish and expect your marriage to last. As Tyler Perry said in his movie u trade the I's for We. It is no longer about you. Nobody in their right mind will stand for selfishness for very long.
          2. Marriage involves Grown Up Responsibilities that u must know how to handle or it won't last.

        • Bree

          I don't count folks who have only been married for 5 years or less and people who have had "hollywood marriages." Yes anyone can get married….but how many people can Stay Married For Life." That's my point. It takes certain qualities and personality traits and a certain level of maturity, responsibility and commitment to "Make It Last Forever." . It's people who live together longer than some people stay married. Holla at me and advise me if you've been married almost as long as I've been living, or at least close to 10 years. Obviously if your divorced after only 5 years of marriage you and who you married are not doing something right and have a problem making it last. The last time I checked, marriage wasn't something u do just to have companionship and guilt free sex for as long as you wanted to. It's something that in all it's intents and purposes should last for a lifetime. If it doesn't then both people made some serious mistakes.

        • High_Five_Ghost

          “Obviously if you’re divorced after only 5 years of marriage you and who you married are not doing something right and have a problem making it last.”

          Eek!…the divorced ladies might actually get you for that one.

          I don’t attend the Tyler Perry School of relationships. Nor do I spend much time w/ church folks aka the most judgmental folks on the planet. So I can’t begin to understand judgmental-ness of that comment.

          Bad logic though. They used to think that eating fat made you fat as well. (not true by the way) It turns out; simplicity is only good for church pulpits and Tyler Perry movies. Diagnosis of problems in REAL life is much more complex. It must be so simple to view it from a high horse position and cast judgments tho. Real talk, I used to be like that in my church days…then I saw how complex real life is and I grew a respect to people that most would consider failures…wait…..didn’t Jesus do that? (no comparison)

        • Bree

          High Five my only reference to Tyler Perry was that one line from Why Did I Get Married that I quoted. " when you get married u trade the I's for We." I stated this because it's a fact. I never once said everything Tyler Perry said is gospel and that i subscribe to his school of thought. And again I'm sorry u take it as judgement but it's not. It's some peoples reality. What I say is what I've heard other married and divorced people say. Regardless of the complexities of life, at the end of the day, there is Right & Wrong.

        • Bree

          High-Five, the reality is whether u think it's right or not, in our and many other society's marriage and children Do define who you are. When your married you become Mrs. or Mr. Your last name changes. Your identity changes. When you have kids your a mom. So & So's mom. I watched a documentary on Shirly Ceasar years ago. Her husband joked about how people called him Mr. Ceasar all the time when that wasn't his last name. Obviously due to the celebrity status attached to Shirley Ceasars name and the fact that it's a brand and not just a name, she never changed her last name to his. He was ok with it though. In fact he said he was so proud of her and secure within himself that he was proud to be "Mr. Ceasar." I'm not being judgemental at all. If anything it's society that judges and slaps labels on you whether u like it or not. Society is judgemental, not me. I'm just the messenger. In fact this very thing is a huge problem with women who have very successful and/or celebrity husbands.

        • Bree

          They feel like after becoming the wife of Rev, or Dr. so and so, they lose their identity. After becoming mom and wife they no longer know who they really are, and/or what they really want. Society has labeled them and they have stepped into their roles as wives and mothers. Once the kids are grown or if they become widows they are clueless about how to live their life outside of their roles as mom and wife because that was their Identity and all they knew. Hope u understand what I'm saying High-Five.

        • AAA

          But isn't that itself the problem? Nobody is wrong or selfish simply for the act of not getting married and/or not having children, its just a personal choice. If you've ever watched Boardwalk Empire which is set in the 1920s there was a character named Angela who was married to the main character Jimmy Darmody but she was lesbian/bisexual and never truly wanted to be married in the first place and it caused many issues in their relationship.

          This was I believe a parallel to society at large and how for a very long time people have been forced due to societal pressure into doing things they don't want and they and everyone involved with them suffers because of it. True progress is simply allowing to live and let live, in reality someone who wants to get married & have children should have more of an explanation as to why they want what they do, seeing as they're taking on a large responsibility that requires they be mentally & emotionally mature before doing so. People who are unmarried without kids shouldn't be questioned about their status, seeing as they only have to take care of themselves & therefore are carrying a lesser burden.

        • Bree

          AAA not saying its wrong and selfish to not get married. I'm not married yet and I'm not selfish. All I am saying is in order for a marriage to last and withstand the test of time it takes 2 mature, responsible, and unselfish people. I'm simply commenting on what I've heard from married people what it takes to make a marriage last.
          To add to that though, some of the reasons that people I know have given for not getting married have been selfish reasons. People who make the choice to not get married obviously have reasons for that. It may sound bad or judgemental. It's not, it's just reality.

        • High_Five_Ghost

          “the reality is whether u think it's right or not, in our and many other society's marriage and children Do define who you are… Society is judgmental, not me.”

          If you’re speaking for society then I’m currently in jail, w/ 6 kids and smoke weed all day & you are preggers w/ your 3rd child, on welfare and coming up with creative ways to live off the govt. None of that is reality tho is it? In short, eff society…I make my own reality.
          I speak as HFG and I don’t need society to back me up. Adulthood is not defined with kids and a marriage ‘cause it’s as easy as screwing and filing paperwork. Love is real. Everything that surrounds it (society wise) is B.S.

        • Bree

          High_Five I meant that it defines you in the eyes of society based on how they see you. Again I am not saying it's right, but it is. I've seen it happen many times.
          Whether we like it or not society defines and judges people based on their status, and what roles they have in life all the time. You will be judged as long as you live. It is what it is. Someone once told me "If people are talking about you it's cause your on their mind and your important."

        • Bree

          thank you Amaris.

      • Bree

        High-Five this is what I hear people say. "I do not want that responsibility" or "I'm not ready for that responsibiltiy." "Or I'm an a-hole and I know I am and I'm too selfish."

        • langwichartz

          I would agree with High-Five and say that this is more of an example of self-awareness than just labeling someone as immature, or limiting their character flaw to just selfishness.

        • Bree

          True lang. Again I'm not labeling anyone, just sayin society does.

  • bree

    Honestly I don't think people are "opting out" of marriage at all. Now as opposed to in the olden days there is no pressure and/or force to marry before you really want to. In the US we don't have arranged marriages typically so again, nobody has to marry anyone they don't want to before they are good and ready. So now since the changing of times, people are exercising their right to decide who they want to marry and when they are ready.
    In your opinion, why should men (or women) still choose to get married? Well there are many perks and advantages to marriage. I believe in another similar post someone posted a link that gave a list of all the advantages to marriage. One is tax breaks. You immediately get a tax break once your married. I mean like in days, (seen it happen).

  • Bree

    I agree that children fair better in an traditional 2 parent happy household because they have that example of how to carry on the torch of being a productive citizen of society. Again the emphasis is on a happy, healthy, well adjusted couple who provide a healthy, happy and balanced environment for the children. It's easier to pay bills when you have a partner. You do tend to spend more money, but thats because you have it to spend. You save a lot when you only have to pay for half of most, or all of your bills. Companionship, nobody truly wants to be alone.
    You have a steady sex partner. As long as you can rest assured that both of you are being faithful to each other, you dont' have to worry about STI's or STD's. You can have all the crazy, hot butt-naked, wild, kinky sex you want without any worry. No morning walk of shame. None of that.
    I wonder though, why married people don't have kinkier, crazier, more passionate sex more often.
    Seems like single people have more fun sex. idk. Can't call that one.

    • larnelw

      There are 2 theories I will throw at you about kinky/crazy sex.

      1. Single folks may go into that sexual situation thinking "This might be my only chance with this person so I gotta go 100% and get as much out of this as possible".

      2. Married folks could very well be having all that kinky, crazy, wild sex. But if you are a happily married and fully monogomous couple the last thing you want to do is bring the world into your bed room and tell them what yall have going on.

      I have a couple my wife and I are friends with that mistakenly let it slip that when they get it in he occasionally likes to pull out and EJ all on her forehead and face. I've known her longer than I knew him so I laughing and felt comfortable asking her like, "Say whaaaaat!!?? lol". Her response, "(shoulder shrug) So what? We married. we like to have our fun". So you never know whats going on behind peoples doors. You could be very surprised.

      I posted my opinion on those 6 items above. Just waiting on one of the mods finally APPROVE IT SO THAT IT WILL POST. lol
      Though I don't know why it needed approval

      • The Dark Knight

        Amen to #2. Oddly enough, married people get laid A LOT more (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/13/marriage-sex_n_1422644.html). I'm also not surprised your friends are such freaks. To be quite honest, married sex is the best sex because a lot of women (and men) tend to lose their inhibitions in the bedroom after attaining the title of husband & wife. "Why does this happen" you may ask? Because that's your spouse, not some chick/dude you're smashing (who might be here one day and gone the next) so anything goes. Don't believe the hype of what people/the media says because the BIGGEST freaks (both men and women) are the ones with the rings on their finger.

        • larnelw

          I fully agree.

        • Bree

          Dark Knight from what i hear I can't tell…..idk.

      • Bree

        ok. Thanks larnel. Oddly enough some of the married folks I know say they don't have sex much at all. Men complain about the woman wearing ponytails and jogging suits all the time. Women complain about them men being too needy when it comes to sex.
        I recall the day I had to pick out and talk one of my bff's into getting sexy lingerie for her husband. She was so hesitant to get anything risque. I was like "wtf" Girl thats your husband. U betta get whatever freaknasty thing he wants to see you in and keep it hot. And the same with my cousin. For her husbands b-day I had to tell her to put on some sexy lingerie in his fav color and heels and cook him his fav meal. And this was only in their 1st year of marriage. She was hesitant to wear the lingerie and heels. I told her "this is how u keep it hot." And I was the completely single one then. I just used to smh like wtf……why are women so shy and hesitant when it comes to their own damn husbands.?? Couldn't understand it for the life of me. The divorced people I know ,they said in the very beginning the sex was great, then after a while it was boring or non-existent or just bad. Idk, just wondered about that.

  • Jaylovejapan

    I’ll never get married as long as i am living here in california. The laws are screwed up.

    Men don’t gain anything from marriage anyway.

    • larnelw

      What exacty were you looking to gain from marriage? Land? Live stock? lol

      • Bree

        lmao larne….i think he's tryin not to lose in the event of a divorce more than anything else…

  • http://twitter.com/jtSolBroSupreme @jtSolBroSupreme

    how about people are free to choose whatever lifestyle they please, be it married or single. Different strokes for different folks. What really does not matter is what someone else thinks about YOUR decision. Live your life – damn what someone else has to say about it. HOWEVER, this is not an endorsement to have kids out of wedlock and be irresponsible as hell. I believe children are best bought up with 2 married parents who are both on the same page – yes, I know, its not so common among OUR folks. When I worked a certain job, I couldn't keep up with the number of baby showers that took place but I could count the number of wedding announcements that came out – talk about a lopsided number. For those who don't plan on having kids, thats fine and their choice. It also gives them a little more freedom in their choices. Plenty of folks who are married and have kids are SELFISH AS HELL so don't think those who 'OPT OUT OF MARRIAGE AND KIDS' are any more selfish than those who jumped the broom made the babies and now act as if it is a huge convenience.

    And sure, married folks have plenty of hot butt-nekid sex, and guess what, sometimes it with each other. LOL *joke*

    • Bree

      lol…ok SolBro. Thats good to know. :) I was getting worried. I guess it is just the crazy as people I know.

  • larnelw

    *Reposting what I sent earlier but editting it so that the FCC will let me be lol*

    1. They’ll Lose Respect
    – You aren't much of a man if your decisions in life are based off your "boys" respect.

    2. They’ll Lose Out on Sex
    – If you are fool enough to marry a woman that doesn't really desire or enjoy sex that frequently then that is your fault. But to the man who chooses wisely you are talking about dang near p0rn0graphic, freaky nasty sex within arms reach and on tap. No modesty. No inhibitions. No her worrying about feeling like a ho or you telling your boys.
    PLUS….married "Virginia" is like a new shoe with custom orthotics. It just caresses ever part of "you". Casual "Virginia" is like rental shoes from the bowling alley. The fit is never right.

    3. They Can Lose Their Children and Their Money
    – Yeah okay. Have sex with enough women in your life and you are most definitely going to slip one past the goalie. Then you will have a baby mother, a child most likely not living with you and an extra bill each month.

    4. They Can Lose Their Space & 5. They Can Lose Their Freedom
    – These two are eeeehhh. You do lose a bit of space and freedom. You of course need to share a bit of that with your spouse now. BUT if you are in a serious relationship (pre-marriage) it really isn't that different. Actually to some extent you have to share MORE space with a girlfriend then a wife. Because you live with this woman, you wake up to this woman, the two of you will make it a duty to take your own personal space and freedom to hang with friends or do your own thing.
    But as compared to being single and have no accountability to anyone….yeah there is a big difference.

    6. The Single Life is Better than Ever
    – Only benefit is the endless opportunity to pursue "something new". Its in our human nature to always crave something new in every aspect. Being single allows that search for the "new" woman to attain without any repercussion. But past that I prefer married life over anything else single life has to offer.

    • paynewell

      all of this above is amazing!!!
      My recent post When I’m gone:The importance of after life planning

    • Uncle Hugh, BP

      larnelw: "married "Virginia" is like a new shoe with custom orthotics. It just caresses ever part of "you". Casual "Virginia" is like rental shoes from the bowling alley. The fit is never right."

      Best analogy ever.

  • Terry

    Ladies, remember when you were 15-25 years old and your body was developing and you were at the peak of your attraction? You were attracted to boys… and by boys and older men. You carried with you a level fear for acting on that attraction. Abuse, reputations tainted, STDs, pregnancy, etc. Remember when you still desire companionship but you realize how difficult it was to find a boyfriend to respect the feelings you have of being cautious? For men who have reach their goals in life, be it financial, emotional and overall stability, this is the same fear that we now have. I’m definitely still open to marriage, but I think the main thing that women need to do for us is to respect and truly take into consideration the risk and burden that most men will have when making a lifelong commitment.

    • Jennifer

      The "risk" and "burden" goes both ways. Women have also reached their "financial,emotional and overall stability". We all bear the burden of marriage, I don't understand why men think otherwise.

      • AAA

        The laws are not slanted against women the way they are against men. Men are assumed to be second to women in every way pertaining to child care once a divorce happens and this starts a domino effect into unfair custody arrangements, the man being forced to move out of his home, alienation from his children & financially crippling child support payments. Women initiate most divorces, so most of them are mentally done before any paper is ever filed, men have the rug pulled out from under them then are forced to be an ATM for a woman that doesn't even want him anymore & abuses the gender bias to keep him away from his children in many cases. This is simply unfair and too much for the average man to handle, your marriage ending is already difficult enough, there's no need to add insult to injury.

        • rena215

          Women are much more likely to be hit harder financially than men in a divorce, since she is more likely to sacrifice her career goals to take care of the home/raise children. I see this a lot in my office, when women decide to work part-time or take long leaves of absences for childcare. It ends up costing them a lot, since they typically give up the partner track, or it takes a lot longer to get there. Women are typically sacrificing the most on the front end, so I think the laws regarding spousal support and child support are there to counteract that.

          Related to that, Amaris raised a good point; women are more likely to file for bankruptcy after a divorce, even with the laws in place.

          Finally, I do think that child custody laws should be more balanced – meaning courts should award custody to the parent who is most capable instead of automatically granting custody to the mother (laws/courts are moving in that direction). However, the parent who is granted custody (whether it's the mother or father) should be granted the home to stay in, so as not to uproot the children. Spousal support should (and is) awarded to spouse making the lower income, regardless of whether it's the man or woman.

        • AAA

          The term spousal support is an oxymoron though for the fact that the other person is not your spouse anymore. I understand & respect the sacrifice to career women make in childcare but the difference is that a man is their as she's a stay at home mom or working part time to raise the kids. No one is there for the divorced man, no safety net exists at all & that's the major difference.

          Joint custody should be the default unless one parent objects to it & in that case they should pay child support. If they agree to the equal custody arrangement & both people have similar incomes then no one should pay child support to anyone, seeing as the splitting time of the children itself leads to a split in childcare costs. I just don't understand why a man has to provide for someone he's not even with anymore, if you think that's unfair just ask yourself would you want to.

        • rena215

          The partner who made more money should pay some type of support to the non-earning partner, at least for a while. By the way, men who stay at home or earn less than their partners can and do file for and receive spousal support. I out earn my partner by a lot, so I would be the one paying for support and I still don't see any problem with the idea.

          Now, I don't think this should be abused (it should be just temporary and limited in amount), but I get the idea. People who depended on their spouses to work while they contributed more in the home should not just be thrown out on the street because of the divorce.

        • Bree

          AAA women initiate some of these divorces due to cheating, lying, and abuse. keep that in mind. They are not doing it for no reason.

        • bree

          Most of the time they aren't filing for divorce for no reason.

        • AAA

          You said it "some" How many just file because they're simply bored because they had unrealistic expectations & want out. That's not a mans fault at all. As far as lying, cheating etc, women have as many affairs as men & IDK about you but I've seen women lie to whomever without batting an eye.

          Your comment is implying women don't do cruel things in marriages or at least not as often as men which isn't true, yet the truth is even after experiencing these cruel things men much less often than women pull the pin out of the divorce grenade. It's something that as an unmarried man that I can't simply turn a blind eye to.

    • Furious Styles

      Yeah. We value commitment/marriage the way women value sex. We enjoy it, but just don’t want to do it with the wrong person.

      • Bree

        Furious thats a great way to put it! Love It!

  • langwichartz

    The institution of marriage isn't as valued as it used to be. We live in a more individualistic society rather than a communal one. Modern society is more sexual liberal than before. Gender roles and expectations have become chaotic and counter-productive. We see more examples of bad/failed marriages than good ones. The socioeconomic climate is not conducive to healthy marriages for poor people. Organic love is no longer the primary foundation for unions, (yes love doesn't pay bills) but without it, you're nothing more than a social corporate merger and as soon as things become less profitable, here comes the divorce!!! Almost forgot the most important one, FOLKS GET MARRIED FOR THE WRONG DANG REASONS!!!

    • Bree

      Cosign on All That lang.

  • Tea Are

    Just want to say i read her book and it had several slightly racists references. Much of it referring to reasons why white males feel like they're losing out on the American dream like job loss, a court system stacked against and women who are successful/strong/powerful. Woulnd't refer to her as a reliable resource on men checking out of society/marriage/committment, etc.

    • High_Five_Ghost

      thanks for pointing that out.

  • http://www.opinionatedmale.com cortonio

    I think men are marrying less is because of yes, some have commitment issues and want to live that life… but I think the real reason is, especially with today's brothers is they have no one to model after. I mean let's face it they're more black "baby daddy's" (no matter how good a father you actually are) than husbands. Also men who have single friends or miserable friends who shun marriage often take after what they like or do…remember birds of a feather flock together. How many devoted happily married men have single friends who gallivant all over the place on "smash missions"…not many.
    My recent post A Closet Freak: A Man’s Point Of View

    • Bree

      true that Cortonio. You don't hear anyone preaching to men the benefits of marriage for them. They see and deal with the negative and the divorce issues. So they see mostly the ugly side.
      In the AA Community divorce isn't pushed because unfortunately lifestyles aren't conducive to it.
      I know a few people who stayed home with their parents or grandparents well into their 30's tothelp them out financially. Or people who took care of sickly parents and/or grandparents. I did it as a teenager. So not a lot of highschool boyfriends and dances for me. We need our young people at home.

      • Bree

        Same thing goes for Latino's. Therefore it's hard for them to date, much less be in a serious relationship where their expected to spend time with a s/o. And for them to get married and move out of "big mama's" house is out of the question. My college bff couldn't get an aptmnt with me because she helped take care of and raise her younger brothers. Her mom was a single parent and worked 2 jobs. She went to school and worked part time. I kept asking her to get a place with me when we were in school and she broke down and cried and told me she couldn't because her mom needed her at home to be a 2nd mom to her brothers. That type of environment is not always conducive to long-term long lasting relationships, let alone marriage.
        Also there are the people who can't afford to get married so they stay engaged for 10 years. lol

  • High_Five_Ghost

    “they have no one to model after. I mean let's face it they're more black "baby daddy's" (no matter how good a father you actually are) than husbands.”

    Role models are for morality based decisions (which marriage shouldn’t be). Not that I don’t see the point that you’re trying to make but if marriage was the attractive option that it once was, no role models would be needed.

    “How many devoted happily married men have single friends who gallivant all over the place on "smash missions"…not many.”

    This is why I get the side eye from my married friends’ wives. SMH

  • http://www.OpinionatedMale.com Mr SoBo

    With this short vid, Helen Smith has proven she is one woman that gets it. A fine assessment of the realities of modern times. Until family law is overhauled and made fair between the sexes, men by and large will continue to opt out of such commitments and instead indulge for as long as humanly possible in the single life that is the taboo-less, casual sex cesspool we are witnessing before our eyes.

    For every man that chooses to remain single, there are more women that will HAVE to be. So those women that have dreams to be married at some point in their lives, now is the time to worry. To help combat this reality from truly taking root, it would be beneficial for these women to take up arms alongside men who are fighting to change state child support and family court laws. I believe once the system is revamped to be balanced and reasonable, we will once again see a growing interest in marriage among men as the definitive royal screwing that accompanies a failed marriage will no longer be of concern. Until then, it will continue to be Planet of the Apes out in these streets: Fall of the Wife and The Rise of the Baby Mama.

    On another interesting note, of the 6 reasons listed, not one of them was that men are 'intimidated' by women ( albeit their advanced degrees, higher earning salary, or even higher status).

    This should in effect put to rest one of the more common and loudest argument we are so used to hearing from 'certain audiences' in the blogosphere surrounding the reasons men are avoiding marriage in these times.

    Mr. SoBo
    OpinionatedMale.com

    My recent post A Closet Freak: A Man’s Point Of View

  • http://www.singleblackmale.ord jprince

    when are you guys, going to do a post. about how bw date rough necks and ignore the good bm and when he dates outside of his race. bw get mad about it.

  • rena215

    There are plenty of men for those women who want to get married, if they know what to look for in a mate. During my two years of dating, I've spoken with quite a few men (usually around 30) who want nothing more than to settle down, get married and have a family. From my experience, these men are usually more low-key (not the most flashy/aggressive, or most noticeable person in social settings). Of course, this all depends on the women's desirability, social circles, level of education, profession, etc. If you are finding nothing but non-committal men with a negative view of marriage, you need to change your social circle and/or work on other areas to increase your desirability to those men who are interested in marriage (involves both a physical and mental development).

    I will even go as far to say that there are still plenty of men who view marriage and family as markers of adulthood. This is coming from someone in the Midwest, though, and most of the men I know are high level professionals (grad school or higher).

    • Bree

      I agree with changing your social circles and expanding your horizons, getting out more and being more open-minded.

  • Uit

    @MrSobo I don't see why (feel free to explain) women have to take up arms to balance family laws. Now I'm speaking about something I have very little experience with but here's what I know about custody and child support: men stop paying and don't push for custody of thier children. So even if the laws that be are squared away what are men going to do? Pay less for children they dont intend to personally take care of?
    I also feel that the Rise of the Baby Mama is more so culpable to men than to women.

    • High_Five_Ghost

      “I don't see why (feel free to explain) women have to take up arms to balance family laws.”

      In America all men are painted with a broad stroke. Every baby daddy and ex-husband is instantly treated like a tried and true deadbeat dad…much like your statement below. ..

      “but here's what I know about custody and child support: men stop paying and don't push for custody of their children.”

      Untrue. That’s another “broad stroke” statement. There’s no stat system for those who fight for and do right by their children so they don’t get counted and what’s left is the illusion of your statement.

      This is why women should (but won’t) join that fight. And why would they (I ain’t hatting). There’s too much to gain by letting it remain the way it is. In this country, you can be made to continue to pay for kids that are found not to be yours. It’s real out here.

  • Uit

    I definitely think that people more and more these days are on a chase for that "new" high. Its kinda like people are addicted to an idea in thier head. Everyone wants a taste of the newest and best and then leave to chase again. I understand wanting something new to chase away monotony but I feel like this mindset is creating a world full of unreliable people that will ditch you chasing happy. And its not even happiness people are chasing instant gratification. I think marriage conflicts with this idea, its basically the opposite. I think of the ideal single life as wind and ideal marriage as a tree. Sure being int the wind is cool and you go here and there but it gets cold out there when you're alone. Marriage is a tree gotta have deep roots and it takes time for it to bloom.

  • Lucky my Parents Were Married

    Don’t abstain get married. Black people look poor and low class these days with all this shacking up baby moma daddy stuff. White folks find marriage as a come up, a part of the good ole boy club, Manhood and womanhood, A part of the American dream (a beautiful wife and 2.5 goodlooking talented kids). Look I don’t know about y’all but I benefited from marriage. Man I had a mom and dad at home everyone in the house had my father’s last name. I felt bad seeing my friends in single parent homes cuz mom and dad wasn’t commited. I grew up with the standard to find not a man but a husband. I felt proud to be a wanted child not a basterd child. I know if my parents never got married my parents still would have had kids but would my dad have been as commited to his kids and woman? Probably not. My dad is my mother’s husband and my mother is my father’s wife. I don’t know about y’all but I’m getting married just so my kids can benefit it not always about u! People think about the future. Are you gonna be a baby daddy grandpa? Thats gross. Men like sex, sex WILL make babies, yeah you men think you gonna play around then get married well you and all the baby daddies thought that too. The longer the black community put off marriage the more basterd kids come along. We gotta do better my beautiful black people. Somebody need to start a black marriage movement cuz this single mother/father house hold is getting out of control.

  • Jimbo

    Thought: How about making dna tests and prenups mandatory?

  • Sue

    I,ve read all the ideas, comments, theories of everyone. So why does any person who don’t either believe in marriage or just don’t want to get married stay in a relationship with one person for more than a couple of montns. Shouldn’t this person then have flings and move on to the next. He or she gains from such a relationship. Someone to spent time with, go to the movies with, have a nice picnic, comftability, SEX. I can go on with this list. BUT you don’t want to commit take the relationship to the next level because you already have everything marriage has to offer and you don’t need to give anything up for that. If he or she starts demanding to much, you turn around and leave. Reading all this information (excuses) that humans think up makes me want to run away from the human race. It is about selfishness, greedy, no responsibility. Yes you have choices. If you choose not to get married don’t have a long term relationship. This will show people not to get to serious about him or her.

  • juniper

    greatly said!