More and more Americans are choosing cohabitation instead of marriage or before actually tying the knot. Beyond the “so-called” benefits of cohabitation that some would like you to believe, stands the facts that show us just how detrimental this practice happens to be. And as there is substantiated proof in the benefits of abstinence, so there are plenty of benefits in marriage over cohabitation. In fact, here are just a few reasons why you shouldn’t move in together.

A study conducted in 1997 concluded that cohabitation increased young people’s acceptance of divorce; however, other living experiences did not. In addition, the study found that the more months couples lived together, the less enthusiastic they were about marriage and childbearing. After 5 years, the study discovered that nearly 40 percent of cohabiting couples had broken up with only 21 percent still cohabiting. In conclusion, according to the study, no positive attribution in cohabitation could be found.

Several studies have been conducted that conclude living together outside marriage increases the risk of domestic violence in women and the risk of sexual and physical abuse in children. Studies show that women in cohabiting relationships suffer violent aggression as much as five times more than married women. The evidence also strongly suggests that the most unsafe of all family environments is when the mother and child are living with someone other than the child’s biological father.

Further studies conclude that couples who cohabitate have lower levels of well-being and happiness than their married counterparts. Annual rates of depression among cohabitants are three times higher than married couples.

Are you starting to get the picture?