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The fates of families were dividing along demographic lines even before the COVID pandemic made the division worse. That is the core finding of a new study this week by the American Enterprise Institute, the Institute for Family Studies, and Brigham Young University’s Wheatley Institute.
The family structures of different demographic groups have been diverging for decades. People with lower incomes and less education have been marrying less and having fewer children. When they do have children, they are more often raised by unwed parents. Wealthy Americans with more education are also more likely to get married and more likely to have children, and those children are more likely to be raised in married households.
The desire to marry increased generally during the pandemic; people still want emotional and physical intimacy. But the pandemic accelerated existing patterns. Low-income single adults expressing a desire to marry increased by two percentage …

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