Attitudes toward Cohabitation in 28 Countries: Does Marital Status Matter?

Zoya Gubernskaya, University of California, Irvine

Cohabitation has become a norm in many countries during the last decades. In this research I compare people’s attitudes toward cohabitation in 28 nations and explore how current marital status influences these attitudes in countries with high, medium and low cohabitation rates. The analysis shows that there are considerable cross-country differences in the attitudes toward cohabitation that are strongly related to the prevalence of this type of union. Cohabiting individuals hold the most positive attitudes toward cohabitation in most countries, but the difference in the level of the approval between cohabitors and marrieds is much larger in countries with medium and low cohabitation rates. In countries with high cohabitation rates, single people are more approving of cohabitation than married. However, in countries with medium and low prevalence of cohabitation, the attitudes of married and single are fairly similar but far less favorable.

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Presented in Poster Session 3