Educated Black Women Do Find Husbands

She Matters: A revived story sparks an age-old debate about going to college versus getting married.

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The logic in the article is shameful, destructive, ignorant and dangerous. And, furthermore, inaccurate. In a 2011 study that I wish were talked about as often as that "42 percent of black women will never be married" statistic, Ivory Toldson, a contributor to The Root and a senior research analyst for the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation; and Bryant Marks, a Morehouse psychology professor, found that the more education a black woman has, the more likely she is to be married.

Toldson and Marks looked at rates of marriage for black women based on their education in Atlanta, a city long decried as the worst place in America for a black woman to find a husband. In Atlanta, 37 percent of black women with a high school diploma are married, while 38 percent among those with a college degree are married. The percentage of black married women jumps significantly to 55 percent for women with a master's or professional degree, and 67 percent among those with a doctoral degree.  

A study by New York University sociologists Paula England and Jonathan Bearak concluded the same thing: Having a college education increases the marriage rates for black women in their 30s and 40s much more substantially for blacks than for whites.

Additionally, a March 2013 study published in the journal Family Relations found that less-educated couples are more likely to divorce than well-educated couples. Also, a study by the Council on Contemporary Families found that educated women are also more likely to report themselves happy in their marriages than less-educated women.

Despite the headline of that attention-seeking post, education isn't a barrier to marriage for black women. In fact, it's a substantial benefit to getting married, remaining married and, best of all, being happily married. Think about that the next time you debate going for that (second or third) degree.

Demetria L. Lucas is a contributing editor to The Root, a life coach and the author of A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life.

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