In the 1970s, the percentage of women with a high school diploma who had children outside of marriage was 13 percent. That number has more than tripled and it now rests at 44 percent. Although a lot of focus in the news is on teen mothers, a study conducted and published by the National Marriage Project says that much of the rise in the number of unwed mothers is due to partners deciding to wait to get married or forgo it completely. Many of the couples are in their 20s and 30s, in stable, adult relationships.
The age old conversation on the relative merits of sons and daughters has been revived by Lisa Belkin, a writer for the Motherlode blog for The New York Times, and Anita E. Kelly, a Notre Dame psychology professor who writes on the Psychology Today website. The conversation is updated with new speculation on why parents of girls divorce more often than parents of boys.