Religious young adults interpret their single experiences based on an intricate system of influences that include personal beliefs, family, religious teachings, and friendships. This qualitative study of 24 never-married, young Mormon men and women examined the social and cultural construction of singlehood based on: (1) definitions of singlehood, (2) influences on the construction of singlehood, and (3) feelings about being single. A major theme of this research emerged in the way participants defined singlehood: by what they lacked and by seeking to end their temporary single state through marriage. Families and religious teachings interacted to form the strongest influences on participants construction of singlehood, while supportive friends helped respondents feel that they were not alone.


Culture, Family, Mormon, Religion, and Singlehood


The authors would like to thank Mareclo Diversi for his careful reading and insightful comments on earlier drafts of this paper. Thanks also goes to the L.D.S. Church leaders who allowed this research to take place within their ward/s take boundaries, and for the individual participants who were willing to share their experiences.

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