There’s a growing trend – on both the left and right – that sees marriage in a negative light. Some claim that marriage is a harmful arrangement, particularly for men.

In a recent interview, Andrew Tate – a disreputable womanizer and faux masculine “influencer” – said, “I don’t think many men actually benefit from marriage as a relationship anymore.”

YouTube commenter and “anti-feminist” media personality H. Pearl Davis has described marriage as “a death sentence for men.”

Davis has said men should be cautious about getting married because “we don’t want them to be divorced, financially crippled, separated from their children, and alone and miserable.”

If men listen to and take Tate and Davis’ advice – they could wave a permanent goodbye to ever hearing Canon in D.

But here’s the rub – and a great tragedy if young men believe otherwise: the idea that marriage is bad for men isn’t true.

Marriage has always been – and remains – good for men. This fact is well documented in studies, articles, books and the research literature for decades. Fostering a well-informed opinion on this issue requires we look at that data.

Now, marriage also has been – and remains – good for women too. But for the purposes of this article, we’ll primarily focus on what marriage means for men.


Sociologist Linda Waite and researcher Maggie Gallagher write in their book The Case for Marriage,

The evidence from four decades of research is surprisingly clear: a good marriage is both men’s and women’s best bet for living a long and healthy life.

Contrary to Davis’ assertion that marriage is a “death sentence” for men, married men in their first marriages enjoy great physical and mental health benefits. According to The Case for Marriage, married men:

  • Live nearly 10 years longer than their unmarried peers;
  • Are about 50% less likely to die – at any age – than unmarried men;
  • Are less likely than singles to suffer from long-term chronic illnesses or disabilities;
  • Are about 30% more likely to rate their health as “excellent or very good” than unmarried men;
  • Drink about half as much as their unmarried peers of the same age;
  • Are less likely to smoke, drink and drive, drive too fast, get into fights, or take risks that increase the chance of accidents and injuries.

As Waite has pointed out,

The health benefits of marriage are so strong that a married man with heart disease can be expected to live, on average, 1400 days longer (nearly four years!) than an unmarried man with a healthy heart.

Without doubt, married men live healthier lives than unmarried men.


Married men are far more likely to earn and keep wealth than unmarried men. As Waite and Gallagher note, men who are married:

  • Make significantly more money than bachelors;
  • Experience faster wage growth than unmarried men;
  • Produce more on average than single men at the same job;
  • Are less likely to show up for work hungover or exhausted;
  • Make more responsible financial decisions than single men.

To put this “marriage premium” in perspective, “a married high-school graduate in the United States earns as much, on average, as a never-married college graduate,” Waite and Gallagher write (emphasis added).

The research shows married men earn and keep far more money than do single men.


Contrary to the popular notion that marriage makes dads unhappy and prompts burnout, numerous studies – including the gold-standard General Social Survey (GSS) – tell us that married women and men who are mothers and fathers report the highest levels of being “very happy.”

The GSS found that 35% of married men with children report being “very happy” compared to married men without children (30%), unmarried men with no children (14%) and unmarried men with children (12%).

Photo Credit: Institute for Family Studies

As Waite and Gallagher summarize, married men:

  • Report less depression, less anxiety and lower levels of other psychological distress than singles.
  • Are about three times less likely to commit suicide than the unmarried.
  • Are half as likely as singles and cohabitors to say they are unhappy with their lives.


As summarized in The Case for Marriage,

Both men and women get health and earnings benefits from marriage, but men benefit more in physical health and earnings.

Both men and women are safer, more sexually satisfied, and wealthier, if married, but women benefit more on sexual satisfaction, financial well-being, and protection from domestic violence, and they benefit about equally on emotional well-being. …

In most areas of life, marriage makes both men and women better off.

This isn’t to say there are not anecdotal examples of men, and women, being harmed by bad marriages. But statistically, marriage is far and away a net positive for men and women.

However, this reality has not seeped into our popular culture, in part, thanks to the foolish advice of commentators like Tate and Davis. Many young Americans today are delaying or forgoing marriage altogether. The national median age of first marriages is now 29 years – its age 30 for men and 28 for women. The average number of marriages has been decreasing for 20 years.

Photo Credit: Institute for Family Studies

The U.S. marriage rate has continuously fallen from its peak in 1970.

Photo Credit: Institute for Family Studies

But in forgoing one of humanity’s principle and primary institutions, men and women become sicker, poorer, sadder, lonelier, less sexually satisfied and unhappy.

So, even if some like Andrew Tate and H. Pearl Davis disagree, don’t believe their modern myth about marriage.

Marriage is, has been, and will always be good for men. Young men, single and married, should take that to heart.

Focus on the Family is presenting the upcoming two-day Resist the Drift Marriage Conference in Anaheim, CA from November 3-4Attending couples will receive Bible-based concepts and tools from our trained marriage professionals on how to reconnect and strengthen their marriages. You can learn more about the upcoming conference here.

Also, if your marriage is struggling, Focus on the Family offers Hope Restored Marriage IntensivesHope Restored is a biblically based, Christian counseling experience for couples facing a crisis moment in their marriage or suffering from years of disconnection and relationship decayYou can find out more about Hope Restored here.

Related articles and resources:

Counseling Consultation & Referrals

Hope Restored

Why Marriage Matters for Adults

Focus on the Family: Marriage

Focus on the Family: Marriage Assessment

Focus on the Family: Marriage Enrichment Events

The Good News You Haven’t Heard About Marriage: Divorce Rate Hits 50-Year Low

New Research Shows Married Families Matter More Than Ever

Married Mothers and Fathers Are Happiest According to Gold-Standard General Social Survey

The Case for Marriage: Why Viral TikTok of 29-Year-Old Single Woman is Problematic

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