Most people consider the day that they got engaged as the happiest one of their lives. Whether a couple gets engaged after a short time or a long time, they are excited about starting a new life together. However, the couple may have some friends and relatives that think the marriage won’t last. Do those friends and relatives know something the couple doesn’t? Possibly. However, newly married couples could take certain steps to ensure the marriage lasts.
Before you agree to get married, take a step back and look at some common denominators in divorce. The National Marriage Project’s “The State of Our Unions” report found that these were common denominators in divorce:
• Those with an income lower than $25,000
• Those who have a child together before marriage
• Those who come from a divorced family
• Those with no religious affiliation
• Those with no college education
While this doesn’t hold true with all couples, if those planning on marriage take these factors into consideration, they may be able to have the foresight to get help with their issues before they have to retain a family law attorney.
According to the report, the above factors are listed in the order in which they affect a couple’s marriage. Money issues have always been a contention in marriages, so it’s not surprising that couples who make less than $25,000 have a 30 percent higher chance of divorce than couples who make more.
Having a child together increases the chance of divorce by 24 percent. The stresses of raising a child, including financial worries because one of the spouses may not be secure in a job, the issues with finding child care or living on one income because one spouse must stay home to care for the child can all have an effect on the marriage.
The biggest demographic factor that leads to divorce is age. The younger the couple is when they marry, the higher their chances of divorce. In fact, if they are under the age of 18, they are 24 percent more likely to end up in divorce.
Demographic factors can often affect one another since they all fit together. For instance, a person with more education will usually be more likely to make above $25,000, and therefore be more likely to stay together. They are also less likely to have children outside of the marriage.
Researchers looking into these issues are not sure why college-educated couples last longer. It could be because these couples realize the benefits of marriage, are more apt to put marriage plans on hold for after college or are more likely to save money.
While a person shouldn’t use common denominators and demographics to predict divorce, he or she should think hard and long about how marriage will change his or her life. Furthermore, marriage isn’t all fun and games, but is instead an institution that a couple has to continually work at. Each half of the couple needs to compromise with the other for certain things. This means that each person should look at the reasons he or she wants to get married. Are these for selfish reasons? Is one part of the couple getting married to get out of an unhappy situation? Is the couple getting married because of pregnancy?
All of the above issues can be overcome with work and the love that hopefully brought a couple together in the first place. However, some actions can be deal breakers. Substance abuse, physical and/or emotional abuse, lying, infidelity and out-of-control gambling are all reasons a spouse should consider divorce. Mental illness is also a reason to consider divorce, unless the spouse who suffers from the issue is able to get to a counselor and/or takes medications that control the illness.
If a couple sought help dealing with demographic issues and the common denominators of divorce, but still feel that they will be better off on their own, or if a spouse has an issue with one or more “deal breakers,” the spouse seeking the divorce should contact The Law Offices of William Edgar for a consultation.
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