Marriage as a societal norm has been prevalent through the ages. Marriage and families have been predominant in all cultures across the globe. As children, we were brought into a world that relies heavily on familial values and systems. Marriage and families have proved to be the foundation on which strong individuals were raised and molded into world citizens.
Marriage has been an important aspect of society and civilizations. Families consisted of husband, wife, and children. These were also called building blocks of an advanced society.
However, with the onset of the change in values, thought processes, and upbringing, this ideology has seen a shift.

Let’s look at some shift changes in ideology and how they have affected marriage in today’s day and age:

Single motherhood:

Many women today are opting to become single mothers, or are forced to raise their children alone. This could be due to a multitude of reasons including choice and circumstance. Women today are more independent and confident than their counterparts from earlier centuries. Women are no longer dependent on male family members to provide food and shelter for them. Just as women are more empowered, so are their mothering instincts. They are able to balance work, personal, and social lives successfully while providing a strong value system and moral upbringing for their children.

Living Single:

Women today consider marriage to be a choice and not an obligation. Since education levels are same for men and women, women now have equal opportunities as men. They prefer living single and being responsible only for themselves. Many widowed women and divorcees also feel the same way – this could either be due to the emotional turmoil that they have previously faced or because they wish to live only by themselves. Living single does not mean that these women do not enjoy the company or men or that they are unsocial. Rather it means that they are able to maintain a balance between social and personal relationships. This could also mean a mutually cohabiting relationship without the added legal pressures of marriage and finances.

Live in relationships:

Many men and women today prefer to live together in harmony without the added legal binding that society expects of them. Living together is a normal custom now considered in the western world. With the onset of independent finances, living conditions, rules, and boundaries, women find it easier to live with their partners rather than entering into a legally binding marriage. Many couples today prefer testing how compatible they are before getting married. Same sex couples find it easier to cohabit rather than face a legal battle with their country laws. Many couples prefer to enter into cohabiting agreements that clearly state how finances will be divided upon separation or tragedy, how bank accounts should be separated, how assets should be divided, and so on.

Marriage is a wonderful institution that couples still prefer and will continue even in the future. They are many benefits to being married like family plans, insurance schemes, medical benefits, and tax planning. However, marriage is not needed anymore in order to have or raise children since most countries allow children to take on the mothers name in the absence of the father. While people hope and pray that marriages work out, it is important for women to feel independent and empowered enough to control their own lives and raise their children as they deem fit. Instead of ostracizing such women, it is time that we started supporting them and their choices.