Single motherhood in America declines as unmarried, cohabiting parents soar

The American family has changed a lot over the last 50 years.

About one-quarter of parents living with a child in America in 2018 are unmarried, up from 7% five decades ago, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data released Wednesday. This trend to co-parent without getting married has also reduced the rate of single mothers, who accounted for 53% of unmarried parents last year versus 88% five decades ago, the study found. Today, 35% of all unmarried parents are living with a partner.

However, cohabiting parents are younger, less educated and less likely to have ever been married than single or solo parents, the report said.

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