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Facts for Features
CB13-FF.21
July 30, 2013

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Unmarried and Single Americans Week Sept. 15-21, 2013

image of single voters unmarried and singleThe Buckeye Singles Council started "National Singles Week" in Ohio in the 1980s to celebrate single life and recognize singles and their contributions to society. The week is now widely observed during the third full week of September (Sept. 15-21 in 2013) as "Unmarried and Single Americans Week," an acknowledgment that many unmarried Americans do not identify with the word "single" because they are parents, have partners or are widowed. In this edition of Facts for Features, unmarried people include those who were never married, widowed or divorced, unless otherwise noted.

Single Life

103 million

Number of unmarried people in America 18 and older in 2012. This group made up 44.1 percent of all U.S. residents 18 and older.
Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements: 2012 <http://www.census.gov/hhes/families/data/cps2012.html> Table A1

53.6%

Percentage of unmarried U.S. residents 18 and older who were women in 2012; 46.4 percent were men.
Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements: 2012 <http://www.census.gov/hhes/families/data/cps2012.html> Table A1

62%

Percentage of unmarried U.S. residents 18 and older in 2012 who had never been married. Another 24 percent were divorced, and 14 percent were widowed.
Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements: 2012 <http://www.census.gov/hhes/families/data/cps2012.html> Table A1

17 million

Number of unmarried U.S. residents 65 and older in 2012. These seniors made up 16 percent of all unmarried people 18 and older.
Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements: 2012 <http://www.census.gov/hhes/families/data/cps2012.html> Table A1

87

Number of unmarried men 18 and older for every 100 unmarried women in the United States in 2012.
Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements: 2012 <http://www.census.gov/hhes/families/data/cps2012.html> Table A1

56 million

Number of households maintained by unmarried men and women in 2012. These households comprised 46 percent of households nationwide.
Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements: 2012 <http://www.census.gov/hhes/families/data/cps2012.html> Table A2

33 million

Number of people who lived alone in 2012. They comprised 27 percent of all households, up from 17 percent in 1970. Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements: 2012
<https://www.census.gov/hhes/families/data/cps2012.html> Table H1 and HH-4

Parenting

36%

Percentage of women age 15 to 50 with a birth in the last 12 months, as of 2011, who were widowed, divorced or never married.
Source: 2011 American Community Survey <http://factfinder2.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ACS/11_1YR/DP02> Table DP02

40%

Percentage of opposite-sex, unmarried-partner couples in 2012 that lived with at least one biological child of either partner.
Source: Source: America's Families and Living Arrangements: 2012 <https://www.census.gov/hhes/families/data/cps2012.html> Table UC3

804,000

Number of unmarried grandparents who were responsible for most of the basic care of a co-resident grandchild in 2011. Twenty-nine percent of co-resident grandparents responsible for their grandchildren were unmarried.
Source: 2011 American Community Survey <http://factfinder2.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ACS/11_1YR/B10057> Table B10057

Unmarried Couples

6.7 million

Number of unmarried-partner households in 2011. Of this number, 605,000 were same-sex households.
Source: 2011 American Community Survey <http://factfinder2.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ACS/11_1YR/B11009> Table B11009

Voters

39%

Percentage of voters in the 2012 presidential election, who were unmarried, compared to 24 percent of voters in the 1972 presidential election.
Source: Voting and Registration in the Election of 2012
<http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/socdemo/voting/publications/p20/2012/tables.html> Table 9

35%

Percentage of voters in the 2010 November election who were unmarried.
Source: Voting and Registration in the Election of 2010
<http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/socdemo/voting/publications/p20/2010/tables.html> Table 9

Education

32.1%

Percentage of unmarried people 25 and older in 2012 who had a high school diploma or equivalent as their highest level of attainment.
Source: Educational Attainment in the United States: 2012
<http://www.census.gov/hhes/socdemo/education/data/cps/2012/tables.html> Table 2

26%

Percentage of unmarried people 25 and older in 2012 with a bachelor's degree or more education.
Source: Educational Attainment in the United States: 2012
<http://www.census.gov/hhes/socdemo/education/data/cps/2012/tables.html> Table 2

Following is a list of observances typically covered by the Census Bureau’s Facts for Features series:

  • African-American History Month (February)
  • Super Bowl
  • Valentine's Day (Feb. 14)
  • Women's History Month (March)
  • Irish-American Heritage Month (March)/
          St. Patrick's Day (March 17)
  • Earth Day (April 22)
  • Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month (May)
  • Older Americans Month (May)
  • Cinco de Mayo (May 5)
  • Mother's Day
  • Hurricane Season Begins (June 1)
  • Father's Day
  • The Fourth of July (July 4)
  • Anniversary of Americans With Disabilities Act (July 26)
  • Back to School (August)
  • Labor Day
  • Grandparents Day
  • Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15)
  • Unmarried and Single Americans Week
  • Halloween (Oct. 31)
  • American Indian/Alaska Native Heritage Month (November)
  • Veterans Day (Nov. 11)
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • The Holiday Season (December)

Editor’s note: The preceding data were collected from a variety of sources and may be subject to sampling variability and other sources of error. Facts for Features are customarily released about two months before an observance in order to accommodate magazine production timelines. Questions or comments should be directed to the Census Bureau’s Public Information Office: telephone: 301-763-3030; fax: 301-763-3762; or e-mail: <PIO@census.gov>.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Public Information Office | PIO@census.gov | Last Revised: February 10, 2014