The Corner

Marriage in the Netherlands, a Decade After SSM

It has been ten years since the Netherlands created same-sex marriage, and a new research brief from the Institute for Marriage and Public Policy, relying primarily on information from Statistics Netherlands, provides a snapshot of the institutional strength of marriage a decade later. (The article does not address causation factors.) Its modest findings are that gay marriages are relatively rare, marriage rates are down, divorce rates are stable, and the out-of-wedlock birthrate is continuing to climb.

The brief concludes: “At a minimum the data from the Netherlands does suggest that the hopes of those making a conservative case for gay marriage — that it will strengthen marriage generally and dramatically increase the stability and fidelity among same-sex couples — are likely to be disappointed.”

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