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Chapter 4 Dating and Cohabitation

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1 Chapter 4 Dating and Cohabitation
Cultural and Historical Background of Dating Functions of Dating in the U.S. Meeting a Partner Dating after Divorce Cohabitation Consequences of Cohabitation Ending an Unsatisfactory Relationship

2 Functions of Dating in the U.S.
Confirmation of social self. Recreation Companionship/intimacy/sex Anticipatory socialization Status achievement Mate selection

3 Relationship Problems: Casual Daters
Communication Lack of commitment Jealousy Other problems: sex, alcohol/drugs, etc. No Problems Different Values

4 Relationship Problems: Involved Daters
Communication Other problems: sex, alcohol/drugs, etc. Jealousy Time for relationship Lack of money Places to go

5 Dating After Divorce Over 2 million Americans divorce annually.
3/4 of divorced people remarry. The divorced who date are 10 years older than those dating/marrying for the first time.

6 Cohabitation 60% of U.S. women who married in the 1990s cohabitated before marriage. In Sweden, 90% of first marriages preceded by living together. In Iceland, norm is to have children, cohabitate with children, then marry.

7 Increase in Cohabitation
Reasons Career commitments. Fear of marriage. Increased tolerance from society. Birth control technology. Avoid legal control of relationship.  

8 Types of Cohabitation Relationships
Here and now: future plans uncertain. Testers: test to see if relationship is right for marriage. Engaged: partners are formally engaged. Money savers: partners live together out of economic convenience.

9 Types of Cohabitation Relationships
Separated: partners are divorcing previous partners. Pension partners: live with new partner to keep health benefits from deceased partner. Cohabitants forever: live together forever instead of getting married.  

10 Experience of Cohabitation
Deciding to move in together Couples “drift” into living together by spending increasing amounts of time together Rarely is there a “decision” to live together. Money and property Most keep money/property separate.

11 Experience of Cohabitation
Sexual values and behaviors More likely to have less traditional sexual values. Higher frequency of sexual behavior than marrieds or singles.

12 Advantages of Cohabitation
Happiness: happier than noncohabitant singles but less happy than marrieds. Delayed marriage: better to live together than to marry at a young age. Learning about self and partner. Less traumatic ending.

13 Disadvantages of Cohabitation
Higher depression levels among cohabitant mothers. Partner most involved may feel used or tricked. Some hide cohabitation from parents, which can strain relationship. Partner may receive no health, Social Security, or retirement benefits.

14 Considerations in Ending a Relationship
Consider improving a relationship before ending it. Acknowledge that ending relationship will be painful. Blame decision to end relationship on self, not partner.

15 Considerations in Ending a Relationship
Cut off relationship completely if you are the person being terminated. Learn by looking at issues that ended the relationship. Allow time to heal: it takes 12 to 18 months to heal from an intense relationship.

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