Statistics are as ever only reliable in a very specific setting. Divorce rates in the US now sit at 46%. This is shared with Australia but the country with the highest divorce rate is Sweden with 55%. It seems no matter what country you live in there is some kind of divorce rate.
There seems to be a divorce epidemic, but the statistics as always only tell part of the story. Yes the stats tell us that almost half of marriages in the US fail, but in reality the divorce rate is falling.
The swell in the divorce rate came in the post-war era, especially in the 70’s. The key reason given for this rise in divorce is twofold. Firstly women joined the workforce in numbers never before seen and secondly there was a liberalization of divorce law.
This stress of a woman in the workplace, bringing home the bacon so to speak, was too much for some marriages, but as it has become standard practice for women to enter the workforce and stay there once married, the rates of divorce have lessened.
Even though getting a divorce is still a fairly simple legal process, divorce rates have lessened, many experts think, because couples have become better accustomed and better able to manage a two income household. With today’s financial crisis there are very few households which can manage on just one income.
Added to this is the fact that couples are marrying later than they did in previous decades. This means that couples have longer on their own to discover themselves. What their bad and good habits might be, as well as the ability to manage their own money.
These are no small tasks that can either make or break a relationship. People are getting married and having children later in life than they once did. They spend the time in their early 20’s studying and building a career so that they will be able to take care of themselves, and others if necessary; that being said, almost half of the married population is getting divorced and the reasons for this will differ from couple to couple.
Divorce rates in the US also differ from one age group to the next, with those between 55 and 59 having the highest divorce rate. The divorce rates for second and third marriages are even higher; this should not be a reason to decide against marriage, it is simply the case.
The statistics seem to suggest that if you were to get married again after a divorce that there is a greater chance that you will get a divorce.
This is, of course, only a statistic. It is interesting in what it suggests about human behavior and relationships. We also have to consider that life as a whole is becoming more transient.
People move around more, they change jobs five times more often than two decades ago. The relationships that we are exposed to through the media are no better and seem to be measured in days and months rather than years.
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