Many people in their early 20s attend more baby showers than weddings, a trend that was underscored by recent interviews of young adults in New York.
“Marriage doesn’t make your relationship any stronger than it would be without the marriage license,” said Mikhail Liverpool, 21, of Queens. He has a 4 month old son with Amanda Lucas, 22, of the Bronx who he is no longer seeing. When asked if he ever thought about marrying his child’s mother, he responded “No, we had problems before Jace was born and now we have more.”
Liverpool was among a group of young adults who were interviewed recently about love, marriage, and having kids. His cousin, Kerwin Barker, 25, of Brooklyn, expressed the same sentiments as Liverpool. “I want to focus on my career and becoming successful, marriage is the last thing on my mind,-” he said.
Their views were supported by a study issued this October by the national Pew Center for Research. “Marriage rates among adults in their 20s have declined sharply since 1990 for both the college-educated and those without a college degree,” the report stated. “But the decline has been much steeper for young adults without a college education.” Not all of the interviewees agreed with that finding.
. “I don’t think your views on marriage have anything to do with school or education,” said Shawn Williams, 25, of the Bronx. “I think it’s more on how you were brought up and your experiences.” Williams has a 1- year- old daughter with Danielle Harewood, 23, a college graduate, of Queens, who he has no intention of marrying now. When asked about his child’s mother, he said, “Ever since she had Sarai, she has been different and I don’t know if I ever want to marry this new person.” It seems that this current group of 20-somethings residing in New York City might or might not be having babies but one thing they all agree on is that marriage is not one of their priorities.
“Marriage is just a piece of paper telling me that I have to give her half once we get divorced. Half of all marriages end in divorce,” said Nico Santana, 20, of Queens. Santana continued “Marriage doesn’t validate anything and it doesn’t help me in any way so I’m not doing it!”
Brian Duran, 24, of Queens, said, “I think males at our age don’t want to get married because we want to have sex with a lot of women. We are programmed as men to want to play a lot before we settle down with just one woman. When we don’t wait, we cheat. Look at athletes like Shaq and Tiger Woods. We come around eventually just not in our 20s and depending on the maturity maybe not even our 30s.”