In days gone by, children born out of wedlock were called names and felt like second-class citizens. Unmarried mothers were often locked up in insane asylyms. Elderly spinsters, of perhaps 25, were considered to be 'on the shelf'. Widowed women dressed in black, hid themselves away and became old before their time - society was not a place to show yourself without a husband. Divorced women - well not many women had the chance to divorce their husbands and a lot suffered violence in the home. Those who could escape may well have been considered 'no better than she ought to be'. If an unmarried couple lived together, as 'man and wife', but without a marriage certificate, he was a rogue and she was a scarlet woman. It just wasn't 'done'. It's done now. Society has changed. Some changes may have taken things further than some of us would have liked, but many of those changes were for the better. Marriage is an ancient institution; is it too ancient for the modern world? [b]Is marriage out of date?[/b] I'm going to give some quotes from an interesting & relevant article from: ‘The Week’, that I have quoted from before.

"The secret of success is constancy to purpose" - Benjamin Disraeli.