A Pew study released mid-January suggests a majority of mums and dads in the United States are prioritising money over marriage.
90% of those quizzed about ‘aspirations’ for their children ‘prioritized financial independence and career satisfaction’ as numero uno.
The Research Centre’s findings claimed that for a majority of parents, ‘it’s extremely or very important their children be financially independent when they are adults.’
Almost as ‘equally important’ for parents was their kids having a job they love.
Higher education also factored into the new childless face of the American dream.
41% of parents surveyed said ‘it was extremely or very important to them that their children earn a college degree.’
Only 20% placed a lot of value in ‘their children becoming parents’, while another 21% emphasised the importance of getting married.
Although the Pew study revealed an alarming disassociation between money, marriage, and parenthood,
‘The vast majority described being a parent as the most important aspect to who they are as a person.’
The survey involved 3,757 people, and included mothers and fathers across income and ethnic groups.
In sum, for 90% of those surveyed, getting a mortgage was more important than getting married.
Likewise, having a career was valued as being more important than having kids.
Criticising the apparent cultural shift towards replacing marriage with money and a mortgage, New York Post columnist Karol Markowicz fired back,
“This is a giant mistake — with the stability of family comes a higher income.”
This isn’t the American dream, it’s an American nightmare, Markowicz inferred.
“Want a better shot at having a good career? Get married.”
Fleshing out her remarks on Facebook, the Floridian doubled down, stating,
‘Parents are making a giant mistake when they encourage their kids toward career over marriage.’
On balance, Markowicz explained,
“Parents should, of course, motivate their children to become financially secure, but when their child grows up and someday asks themselves “What’s the point?” the answer will never come back, ‘To get those slides to Chad in accounting for our presentation.’”
“Raise children who understand [the importance] of finding the right spouse and having children”; the “career and financial stability will follow,” she concluded.
Responding to the data, Time magazine described sociologists as being surprised by the results.
One called the Pew stats ‘provocative.’
Another, Manhattan Institute’s Kay Hymowitz, labelled them a red flag,
“They’re not a very good sign. We have a culture that is defined by loneliness right now, and what’s going to contribute to that more than the decline of family?”
Both Markowicz and Hymowitz are on point.
Getting right with the bank being more important than getting right with God, is an area the West’s post-Christian world needs to re-examine.
According to the Pew study, a majority are literally throwing the baby out with the bathwater.
Our kids need to learn: You can be replaced at work. You cannot be replaced at home.
To lean again on Markowicz, “Work is just a pay-check; family is worth far more.”
“Your co-workers are not going to miss you when you’re gone. Your Twitter followers might not even notice. But done right, you will leave a legacy with your family to carry on.”
Marriage and a family trump money or the mortgage.
Investing in all four takes balance, but none of the latter is worth investing in, if family isn’t put first.
The love of money is the root of all evil.
No band ever wrote a classic cheering on DINKS (double income no kids) doing it for themselves and their “furbabies.”
Look at some of the most loved songs in existence: Bon Jovi’s Living on a Prayer was always the antidote to Pink Floyd’s epic antonym, Money.
Photo by Puwadon Sang-ngern.
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