Singles in the U.S. - Statistics & Facts

Since the 1960s, there has been an increasing number of singles and unmarried persons in the United States, the trend has continued and spread year after year. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the number of single-person households in the United States is increasing, while the average number of people per family has been declining slightly since the 1960s. Additionally, the numbers of single mothers and single fathers in the United States have been subsequently increasing. Today, about a third of Americans are single.

In general, Americans are not so eager to commit to partners anymore, this trend is also evident in the declining marriage rate; only a fifth of American men and even less of American women consider marriage a life goal nowadays. However, this development does not necessarily signal an increase in promiscuity or unfaithfulness – about half of all American singles are not even actively dating, and less than 40 percent of American women have ever had a one-night stand.

Online dating seems more popular among men than among women: While more than half of American dating app users state to have met someone through that service - be it for a long-term relationship, a string of dates or a one-night stand - women predominantly consider their experience with these apps neutral or even very negative. Men, on the other hand, rate their experience as mainly positive.

The trend leading away from traditional social constructs includes not only same-sex marriage and less conventional, more flexible and liberal households; it also seems to include more Americans shying away from committing to a relationship too quickly. The rising numbers of singles may be a zeitgeist produced by its time and environment, with the economy and politics providing a much less stable future ahead. At the same time, it shows increased flexibility and independence.

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