An article in last Sunday’s Washington Post laid out some data on interfaith marriages, and it was not pretty. Such unions “fail at higher rates than same-faith marriages. But couples don’t want to hear that, and no one really wants to tell them.” The article continues:
In some ways, more interfaith marriage is good for civic life. Such unions bring extended families from diverse backgrounds into close contact. There is nothing like marriage between different groups to make society more integrated and more tolerant. …
But the effects on the marriages themselves can be tragic—it is an open secret among academics that tsk-tsking grandmothers may be right. According to calculations based on the American Religious Identification Survey of 2001, people who had been in mixed-religion marriages were three times more likely to be divorced or separated than those who were in same-religion marriages.
(Tsk-tsking grandmothers? I should be so lucky.)
And trends suggest that such marriages will only rise, as younger generations seem less and less concerned about entering into them; indeed, many millennials actively seek them out, “as if,” the author writes, “our society’s institutional rules about nondiscrimination in hiring an employee or admitting someone to college have morphed into rules for screening romantic partners.” While only 15 percent of U.S. households were mixed-faith in 1988, 25 percent were in 2006, a number that is expected only to increase. Less than one-fourth of 18-to-23-year-olds polled felt marrying within their faith was important.
And, except for U.S. Buddhists, who had an outlier-esque 39 percent intermarriage rate, American Jews had the highest intermarriage rate in 2001: 27 percent.
Here is where I gently request that you keep it civil in the comments.
Intermarriage Rates Are Rising Fast, But They’re Failing Fast Too [WP]