It seems the kids are alright…with not being monogamous. That’s probably not what The Who meant exactly in 1965, but here in 2015, a new study by Avvo shows that 51% of adults aged 18-23 are not “morally opposed” to being in an open relationship.
“When we’re young and out in the world on our own for the first time, we’re more apt to experiment with our romantic relationships and be open to new experiences when it comes to love and sex,” commented University of Washington sociologist and sexologist Dr. Pepper Schwartz. “As this generation ages, it will be interesting to see if their views will evolve to accept open relationships less, or if they will continue to accept the idea of open relationships as they marry.”
The data seem to indicate that open relationships are not just acceptable among the young; the survey results go on to show that among those aged 24-32, a full 57% are not opposed to the concept. That percentage drops significantly, however, as respondents move further up the age spectrum, with only 44% of those above 33 stating their non-opposition.
Interestingly, however, the data also indicate a strong desire for marriage among that seemingly free-spirited 24-32 age group, with 25% saying that marriage should be a “life goal,” as opposed to 20% for those aged 18-23, and 17% for those over 33.
One thing all age groups seem to agree on, however, is that divorce is a valid option when things get rough: nearly 25% of all three age groups agree that married couples who no longer want to be in a romantic relationship should “definitely” get a formal divorce. And only half agreed with the statement that “just because the ‘spark’ is gone in a marriage doesn’t mean you should get a divorce.”
“With divorce rates trending upwards overall over the past 50 years, and with many of these young adults growing up in homes where divorced parents and remarriage were the norm, it comes as no surprise that there is a significant number of people who believe that divorce is a reasonable and validated choice when romance fades,” Schwartz said. “The percent of young people who are less invested in marriage as an institution shows a generational vision of marital fragility and perceived limits to the idea of life-time marriage. “
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