What describes the religious beliefs and practices during young adulthood?  What happens when young adults marry?  Is religious affilation a positive factor in marriage or can it be a barrier in...

What describes the religious beliefs and practices during young adulthood?  What happens when young adults marry?  Is religious affilation a positive factor in marriage or can it be a barrier in marriage.

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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We can generally say that, at least in the United States, young adulthood is a time when religious practices decline and religious belief also declines, though perhaps not as significantly.

When we are children, we generally go along with the religious beliefs and practices of our parents.  We tend to believe that whatever our parents tell us is true.  Our parents can also compel us to participate in their religious practices.  They can require us to attend church services with them or to participate in devotional activities at home.  As we become young adults, however, this tends to change.

As we become young adults, we generally move away from our parents and become independent.  They can no longer compel us to engage in religious practices and we often stop engaging in these practices as a way of asserting our new freedom.  When we are young adults, we tend to question the things that we accepted uncritically when we were younger.  This can lead to a reduction in religious belief. 

When we marry, various things can happen to our religious beliefs and practices.  The impact of marriage tends to depend on who we marry.  Religious affiliation can be a positive factor in a marriage or it can cause tension in a marriage.  If we marry someone with religious beliefs and practices much like our own, our marriage will probably be strengthened by religion.  It will be something that we have in common; something that binds us together.  It will prevent us from quarreling over things like the religious instruction of any children that we may have.  However, if we marry someone whose religious beliefs our very different from our own, we can encounter serious difficulties.  We may become discontented with our spouses if they are not willing to change their beliefs.  We may worry about their relationship with God and their chances for salvation.  We may fight about how to raise our children.  All of these things can have a negative impact on a marriage.

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