It is undeniable that marriage in the United States is in a dismal state as evidenced by the increasing rates of divorce in the country. In the US, about 50 percent of marriages end up in divorce and court battles aimed at marriage dissolution. Several theoretical explanations have been suggested in an attempt to explain problems affecting marriage in the United States. Having an insight into the factors affecting marriages in the US requires one to have an in-depth understanding of the changes that tend to reduce the binding nature of matrimonial bonds and changes in expectations that have lead to fewer people opting to marry and more to dissolve their marriage. This conceptual framework views the role that religion plays in affecting the institution of marriage in the United States. Specifically, the conceptual model proposes that the recent decrease in religious practice in America has weakened the institution of marriage in the United States.
It is apparent that religious practice enhances the well-being of the community, families, and individuals, which implies that the level of religious practice in a society has a substantial effect on the stability of marriages, family life, and welfare of children. Particularly, increased participation in religious activities tends to reduce incidences associated with domestic violence, drug abuse, and crime; all these factors have a demeaning impact on the stability of marriage. However, in the contemporary culture in the US, religious activity has reduced substantially, and this has contributed to the rise of social ills in the society. The rise of social ills tends to weaken the institution of marriage as it is evident by the fact that drug abuse and domestic violence are the most prevalent cause of divorce in the United States.
There are several indicators that religious practice is linked to stable marriage. For instance, it is highly likely that people who take part in religious activities are less likely to get divorced; this is because according to some religions such as Catholicism, divorce is a violation of values of religious women and men. The underlying assertion is that religion exerts moral pressure on an individual to stay married. Religious practice has been shown to increase a sense of well-being and moral satisfaction, which are core ingredients needed for a stable marital relationship. An inference from this assertion is that the recent increase in divorce rates and fewer people willing to enter into matrimony can be attributed to the declining importance of religion in the American Society.
The religious practice also has a substantial effect on the quality of marriage. Religious practice does not stabilize matrimonial relationships but serves to increase the quality of marriage. Husbands who attend religious services are likely to have happier wives because of the high levels of affection and understanding. As a result, it can be inferred that religious practice results in marital satisfaction and harmony.
Overall, religious practice plays an integral role in offsetting the societal factors that reduce the significance of marriage institution in the postmodern societal discourse. For instance, religious people are less likely to participate in domestic violence, out-of-wedlock childbearing, and substance abuse. In addition, religious practice promotes factors that tend to increase marital satisfaction such as happiness and well-being. From this, it is apparent that changes in religious activity have different effects on the institution of marriage in the United States. The recent decline in religious activity in the US can be attributed to the dismal state of marriage in the nation.
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