Part 1

These last two weeks have certainly been full of news stories.  From record amounts of snowfall in the Northeast, to autopsy results revealing that Amy Winehouse had a blood alcohol level of more than 4 times the legal amount at the time of her death, to Jessica Simpson revealing her pregnancy, to Kim Kardashian announcing her divorce from Kris Humphries after only 10 weeks of marriage.  News overload.
     Oh, and that doesn't even touch on all the other stories that found a place in the headlines.
     But, it's been a much more difficult time for me, personally. I don't normally dig into the depths of my personal life on here, but every once in a while, I feel the urge to purge, as it were.
     I've been doing a lot of reading and research recently on cohabitation verses the traditional route. Though, really, I hesitate to say traditional considering the number of cohabiting couples has grown 15-fold since the 1960s. More than 60% of marriages start with cohabitation.
     It seems like a great idea, right?  The age old argument of "taking a test drive before you buy the car" comes to mind.  But, then again, what about "Why buy the cow when you are getting milk for free?"
     Though many millenial couples cohabitate before marriage, it doesn't actually seem that they wish to avoid marriage all together. It seems that because so many grew up in a home of divorce, they are taking precautions to avoid that future consequence.
     Esther Fleece sums it up perfectly when she says, "Unfortunately, cohabitation is not an answer to our longings; and it’s not a healthy preseason to marriage. Its message is, 'I’d really like to take part of you. And maybe some time in the future I’ll consider taking all of you.' Ironically, that’s the very thing we’re afraid of -- a commitment-free, self-focused relationship." 
     But, how do I get this across to my students? How do I encourage them toward a faithful and committed marriage? And what does that even mean in today's culture?

     I plan on answering these questions in the coming weeks.  Be sure to check out the blog on our webpage to find out why, exactly, this hit me square between the eyes in the last few weeks.  It's worth the ride, I promise.

What are your thoughts on cohabitation?  Is is a good idea to have a test run? Does it cause problems later on?  Share your thoughts!