The typical American family has certainly changed over the past 50 years. No longer do we see the life of Ozzie and Harriet, where the husband comes in from work, graciously greeted and served by his full-time homemaker wife.
According to Stacker, the description of today’s typical family in the United States, is probably like yours. Don’t feel like you aren’t living the American dream just because you don’t have what you thought was a fairy-tale life.
Stats of the Typical American Family 2019
- Family size is decreasing. In the 1970s, 40% of families reported having four or more children. Today, 41% of families have only two children, with just 14% having four or more. Additionally, the number of families with a single child doubled from 11% in 1976 to 22% in 2015.
- First-time mothers are getting older. The average age for first-time mothers in the 1970s was 21. In 2015, many women chose to wait longer to become parents, and the average age of first-time mothers has jumped to 27.
- People are getting married much older. Throughout the 1960s, the median age for first-time brides was 20, and the median age for first-time grooms was 23. Today the median age for brides is 27; for grooms, it’s 29.
- Fewer people are getting married and more people are cohabiting. In 1960, 72% of adults over 18 were married, while today, only 51% of adults over the age of 18 are married. In the ’60s, fewer than 500,000 unmarried couples were living together before or instead of getting married. By 2012, there was a 900% increase in cohabiting couples; U.S. Census data from that year revealed that 7.8 million couples were living together without having walked down the aisle.
- Divorce rates have dropped. Divorce has been trending downwards since the early 1990s, particularly among millennials who are marrying later.
- Mothers are pursuing further education. In the ’60s only 18% of new mothers had a college education. Today, 67% of new mothers have some form of college under their belt.
- The number of moms working has increased. In the ’50s, 50% of mothers were stay-at-home moms. Today, it has risen to 64% with children still at home, and 70% for moms with children over 18.
- Families are attending church less regularly. In the ’50s, 50% of American families attended church. It seems too overwhelming for families to go to church after working all week nowadays. Only 36% attended regularly now.
- House size has increased. This is surprising with many struggling with the costs of living and tiny homes popping up. The average house of the American family has grown to 2,679 sq. ft.
- Family incomes are higher. The median family income is now $75,000+.
- Pregnant workers have legal protection now. Pregnant women now have the right to work and can no longer be fired.
- Families are safer on the roads and take several vacations a year now. Thanks to the seat belt laws, there are fewer deaths on the highways. Thanks to the rise in income, families now take more than one vacation a year.
- Family dinners are a thing of the past. It use to be a ritual that the family sat down every night for dinner together. Nowadays only 40% of families sit down together for no more than 3 times a week.
- Families are eating less home-cooking and obesity is on the rise. Due to the long hours at work, the convenience of fast-foods, this is too often an option leading to obesity, now on the rise.
- Fewer children live in a 2-parent household. In the ’60s, 87% of children had 2 parents at home. Today, only 46% live in a 2-parent home.
Ref. MSN/lifestyle, Stacker.com
Photo courtesy of Bing via promising.futureswithoutviolence.org