Title page for ETD etd-10102005-131600

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Kleinhen, Rachel M.
URN etd-10102005-131600
Title From cohabitation to marriage : couples' perceptions of the transition stage II of the family life cycle
Degree PhD
Department Family and Child Development
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Johnson, Scott W. Committee Chair
Gilmore, Jerry Committee Member
Lichtman, Marilyn V. Committee Member
Protinsky, Howard O. Jr. Committee Member
Stremmel, Andrew J. Committee Member
  • Marriage
  • Unmarried couples United States
  • Life cycle - Human
Date of Defense 1992-06-15
Availability restricted

Cohabitation, as a relationship form, is becoming much more common in the United States. Approximately half of the persons currently in their 30s cohabit prior to marriage and more than half of all recent marriages were preceded by cohabitation between those marrying. Through the use of in-depth interviews I studied the transition between this new form of "dating" and the traditional course of marriage. Couples who cohabited with each other prior to their marriage were interviewed about how they made the transition to marriage. Couples' perceptions are what changed in the transition from cohabitation to marriage. The transition comes about through the passage of time, through external events which make an impact on the couple's relationship, and through beliefs about what certain events and behaviors mean.

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