Marriage is often thought of as one of the biggest steps in a person's life. So why aren't millennials taking that faithful leap into wedded bliss? Research shows that millennials are saying "I don't" to "I do" for a multitude of reasons.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, millennials are expected to outnumber the baby boomer generation this year, and are finally reaching the typical marrying age -- but this generation is not showing interest in settling down. Consequentially, the marriage rate may drop next year to the lowest level ever recorded.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

This research, conducted by Demographic Intelligence, has shown that going forward, marriage rates may never reach the high rates of generations past. Which begs the question: what's caused this huge decline in marriage? 

It seems to be a number of things, research suggests. Religion could play an integral part in the marrying process, and, because there is a steady rise in the number of American individuals who classify themselves as atheist or agnostic, and a decrease in Americans who classify themselves as Christian, perhaps the idea of taking vows is not personally significant.

One more colossal reason: Millenials consider it acceptable for unwed couples to live together and to have children out of wedlock. In the National Survey of Family Growth, 48 percent of unmarried women who were interviewed between 2006 and 2010 were living with their significant other, as opposed to a mere 34 percent back in 1995. Now that there is no longer a social stigma, couples are becoming more and more comfortable not talking that walk down the aisle.

One can speculate tons of reasons, but the facts are still the same: it seems that millennials feel less obliged to marry, and will simply tie the knot when they are good and ready -- or not.