Recently, things have been rocky. Piles of unfinished translation and school works coupled with family functions drove me kinda insane. Through tough moments, I realized the importance of family. To have someone love you unconditionally is treasure. In Happiness: A revolution in economics, Frey (2008) found marriage is one of the factors to improve happiness. Which I tend to agree with.
Through economics perspective, marriage increases productivity given better labour allocation between spouses. Higher earning spouse focuses in the production of market goods and service, while his/her partner with lower wage specialized in the production of non-market goods and services. Given love exists, both players in marriage want to increase his/her partner's utility. The transaction cost aka the sacrifice is viewed as lower from both parties leaving family (as an economic unit) with higher productivity (Becker, 1973).
Marriage contract guarantees both parties with better trust acknowledge by the legal system. Comparing to cohabiting couples, married couples tend to invest and plan for future with higher savings in their mutual fund. Jay Zagorsky (2005) found that the wealth of married respondents increased by around 14 percent for each year they were wed.
Finally, the couple also earns economies of scale given their shared usage of car, house, and utility. Marriage also serves as a signal of "better physical and mental health, lower mortality, lower rates of violence, and higher productivity in jobs". Since Spence (1973) views education as a costly "signaling tool", marriage status is becoming a more powerful signal where married people benefit from the assumption made about them.
All in all, in economic terms, marriage is BENEFICIAL. I would love to end my post today by an extract from court ruling over the iconic case of Obergefell v. Hodges (2015):
"No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were."
1. Becker, Gary S. (1973) “A theory of marriage: part 1”, Journal of Political Economy, 81, 813-846
2. Elizabeth Peters & Claire M. Kamp Dush (2009) "Marriage and Family: Perspectives and Complexities"
3. Kennedy (2015) Opinion of the court, Obergefell v. Hodges (2015):, https://www.oyez.org/cases/2014/14-556