Things change over time, and relationships are no exception. Sometimes marriage becomes trendy for a while. Then the divorce rates spike, such as what happened during the COVID pandemic. We have always heard that the divorce rate is at 50%, but is this still true?
Statistics change over time, but it seems like we do not always get the real story. If you plan to get married soon or are newly married, you may be concerned about divorce statistics. What factors are involved? Does my marriage have a good chance of surviving?
In 2021, there were 1,985,072 marriages. That same year, there were 689,308 divorces across 45 states. Here is what you need to know about marriage and divorce statistics in the United States.
How Many Marriages Last?
The divorce rate is still hovering around 50%, but that is for first marriages. For subsequent marriages, the divorce rate is even higher. Second marriages have a divorce rate of 67%, with third marriages faring even worse, with a 73% divorce rate. Most new marriages — 60% — are first marriages for both partners. The other 40% are second or subsequent marriages for one or both partners. 6% of couples remarry each other after a divorce. Surprisingly, these marriages are often successful, with 72% of them lasting.
While divorces have actually dropped over time, so has the number of marriages. In 2000, the crude divorce rate was 4.0 per 1,000 population. By 2021, it decreased to 2.5 per 1,000 population. The marriage rate has declined, too, dropping from 8.2 per 1,000 population in 2000 to 6.0 per 1,000 population in 2021.
What Increases the Risk of Divorce?
Most divorces tend to happen around year eight of the marriage, hence the term “seven-year itch.” There are a couple of factors that can increase the risk of divorce. Cohabiting often results in higher divorce rates, even though couples are frequently advised to live together prior to marriage.
Studies show that 57% of couples who did not cohabitate before getting married stayed married for at least 20 years. This is compared to 46% who did live together before marriage. Religion is often a factor, as couples with stronger religious beliefs may be less likely to live together before marriage as well as less likely to divorce.
Also, watching friends and family members divorce can also increase your risk of divorce, so the marital stability of your social network plays a role. Couples who have friends who divorce have a 75% increase in the risk of their own marriage ending, making divorce a possible social contagion.
Most Common Reasons for Divorce
A marriage can end for many different reasons. One of the most common reasons for divorce is lack of commitment, with 75% of people citing it as the cause of their divorce. This is not surprising, as marriage is not always easy. It requires effort from both parties. Both need to be dedicated to their marriage and serious about making it last.
Infidelity is another top cause of divorce, accounting for 60% of divorces. Unfaithfulness is a serious issue since marriages are supposed to be monogamous. When one person fails to fulfill this obligation, it leads to a lack of trust, which can cause the marriage to become irretrievably broken.
Incompatibility is another main reason for divorce. When couples argue too much and just cannot get along, it is hard to have a happy marriage. Marrying too young may also lead to this. Marriage is for adults, and takes a certain amount of maturity to be successful. Of those divorcing, 58% of couples report excess conflict, while 45% claim to have married too young.
Of course, financial problems are also a major issue in marriages. In fact, 38% of couples report financial problems as the cause of divorce. When it comes to money, it is not uncommon for one person in a marriage to be a saver while the other might be a spender. This can lead to a lot of disagreements about how money is spent. When bills are not getting paid, or there is not enough money for food or other necessities, conflicts can arise. In fact, divorce rates tend to decrease as income increases, but only so much. As couples’ incomes increase, divorce rates tend to decrease—but only to a certain point. Divorce rates are the lowest when household income is at around $200,000 and $600,000.
Not surprisingly, many couples divorced because they were not prepared for the realities of marriage. Many people lack knowledge about what marriage entails. They marry their partner with very little information about what marriage is like, and of those surveyed, it contributed to 72% of divorces. They admit they were not aware of the commitment involved. Plus, many say that their partner changed after marriage, and this made it hard to keep the marriage together.
Seek Legal Help
No marriage is immune from divorce. Each marriage is different and has its own set of problems, so it is good to understand the statistics so you can work on your marriage.
Not all marriages are meant to last. Does your relationship have what it takes? If not, then help is here. Broward County divorce attorney Scott J. Stadler has 30+ years of experience handling all types of divorce and family law cases. We want to give you the right information so you can divorce with ease. Call (954) 346-6464 or fill out the online form to schedule a consultation.