Marriage can be a difficult relationship, and divorce is often the only way out. Perhaps the best known statistic in existence today is that half of all marriages end in divorce. But this may no longer be the case. Due to a combination of marriage trends and social factors, divorce rates are at historically low levels. In fact, divorce rates today are comparable to those of nearly fifty years ago.
The biggest single reason that divorce rates are so low is that marriage rates are also very low. For 2015, marriage rates were 6.8 per 1,000, while divorce rates sat at 3.4 per 1,000 nationally. So while this still sticks to the well-known statistic that half of marriages end in divorce, the numbers tells a different story when examined more closely. Marriages from the 1990s lasted much longer than earlier marriages, with 70% making it to the 15-year mark. Presently, data suggests that only 1 in 3 new marriages will end with the involvement of a divorce attorney.
Is Romance at an All Time High?
Social trends also have a high impact on lowering divorce rates. Both men and women are waiting much longer to get married, with men waiting four years longer to get married than their parents or grandparents in the 1950s. Women now wait six years longer before getting married when compared to women from the ’50s. This means that today’s couples marry more now because they are in love and want to, instead of being influenced by other factors.
More men and women have also lived with a previous partner before getting married, gaining valuable experience about what causes relationships to function or fail. Today’s couples often have independent economic stability also, meaning that there is less of an imbalance in family roles. In fact, women today are five times more likely to be the primary earner in the family in comparison with women from the 1960s.
Fewer Marriages Means Fewer Divorces
Divorce is a serious decision, usually requiring the help of a divorce attorney, even if it is a collaborative process. More and more people are choosing to delay or avoid marriage entirely. In the end this means that there are fewer total divorces per year than in past decades. It may also mean that those who do marry can look forward to the likelihood of a long and happy marriage.