At least in La La Land, Sebastian cooks Mia a nice dinner; nevertheless, they are very much like many young couples today at the start of their careers who feel like they must consequently keep marriage at bay. Study after study make plain that today’s millennials are delaying or forgoing marriage entirely at unprecedented rates, with economic and professional reasons as the primary cause. As one Washington Post article on the phenomenon put it, “Marriage is indeed a financial investment, which explains why people their 20s aren’t ready to take the plunge.”I mark with interest, not pride, that all of the weddings at which I officiated from 1985 to until 1999 are still intact. The record becomes a little shaky after that, despite my best efforts at discerning potential problems between the couple during the per-marital conversations. With the coming of age of the millenials, couples would be remarkably devoted to one another and to the institution of matrimony and then, within a very short time, decide that neither was worth the work any longer.
And yet that statement is a nonsequitur. People who have very little money can still invest and are constantly encouraged to do so. Today’s financial gurus will tell you the earlier you invest, the richer off you will be later; that a dollar today can turn into a million dollars after a few patient decades. And so on.
One year, I officiated at three weddings [there have been fewer church weddings in recent years], each of which ended within three years. Nowadays I refer the pre-marital conversations to a qualified family and marriage therapist, although her track record isn't much better than mine.
Clearly, it isn't an issue with money, but with an institutional regard.