Psych 2035 Chapter 10 - Chapter 10 Marriage and Intimate...

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Chapter 10 – Marriage and Intimate Relationships Challenges to the Traditional Model of Marriage Marriage – legally and socially sanctioned union of sexually intimate adults Social trends that are changing the traidiotnal model of marriage: 1. Increased acceptance of singlehood Trend on the rise for several decades Longer postponement of marriage than before Remaining single is become a more acceptable lifestyle (less neg stereotype: lonely, unchosen) 2. Increased acceptance of cohabitation Living together in a sexually intimate relationship without the legal bonds of marriage Increase in such relationships that include children Decline in negative attitudes Married couples are now in the minority 3. Reduced premium on permanence Increasing number of people who regard divorce as justifiable Social stigma lessened and divorce rate climbed 50% of marriages ultimately end in separation or divorce 4. Transitions in gender roles Traditional breadwinner and homemaker roles are being discarded (more women in workforce) Role expectations for husbands and wives are more varied, flexible and ambiguous People regard this trend as a step in the right direction Changing gender roles create new conflicts between couples 5. Increased voluntary childlessness Increasing number of couples who choose not to have children (or delay)
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Result of new career opportunities for women, tendency to marry later and changing attitudes Want independence or concern about overpopulation 6. Decline of the traditional nuclear family Ideal family: husband and wife (married the first time) with 2+ children, man as breadwinner Only a minority of American families now fit that image Norms have changed as people embraced more individualistic values Deciding to Marry Cultural Influences on Marriage Many non-western societies rely on parental arrangements and are strict on acceptable partners 80% of world cultures practice arranged marriage (common in collectivist culture) Declining in some societies as a result of Westernization Collectivist societies weight impact a relationship will have on family rather than rely on heart Reflects cultural priorities Selecting a Mate Mate selection: gradual process that begins with dating and moves on to courtship Monogamy and Polygamy Monogamy: practice of having only one spouse at a time The norm and the law in our society Polygamy: having more than one spouse at a time Many culture practice it, but we often associate it with the Mormon culture Polygamy (in both well and poorly functioning families) is painful for wives Common ways of dealing with it: accepting that this way of life is god’s will, allocating household resources equally, maintaining respect for other wives
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Occurs in societies where women have little to no independence, education or political power Endogamy Tendency for people to marry within their own social group
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