Drop in wives seeking early divorce

family life

The number of wives seeking a divorce within five years of marriage has dropped over the last three decades, research indicates.

According to campaign group the Marriage Foundation, women are over four times more likely to ask for a divorce during the first few years. However, the group’s research suggests that number has halved since 1986. Thirty years ago, 7.9 per cent of women began divorce proceedings before they had been married longer than five years, but by 2013 that number had dropped to 4.2 per cent, the group claimed.

Marriage Foundation research director Harry Benson suggested that “family pressure for men to marry has significantly reduced” and, as a result, those who choose to marry “do so with a greater level of commitment and intention to make the marriage work”. He added that this leads to happier wives and fewer divorces.

Former High Court judge Sir Paul Coleridge founded the group in 2012. While he welcomed the decrease, he was still concerned that “so many fewer couples are marrying now than they were in the 1980s”.

This was a worry because, over the course of his career in the Family Court, he had seen “how much children who undergo family breakdown suffer”. He maintained that “married couples have a far greater chance of avoiding family breakdown than cohabiting couples”.

A “vast majority of young people aspire to get married”, he claimed, adding that it was important “for far more of them to put their instinctive desire into practice”.

Photo by Travis Jon Allison via Flickr

Stowe Family Law Web Team

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1 comment

Luke - December 31, 2015 at 2:17am

I think this is related to the age women are getting married. For instance in the USA women were getting married on average at 23 compared to nearly 27. Getting divorced at 28 is a different ballgame compared to 31-32 in terms of options and also maturity of their original choice.
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Obviously I am not suggesting for one moment that 32-33 is old – that would be ridiculous – but ON AVERAGE it is not the same as 28 and I would also suggest that people change a lot more from 23 to 28 than they do from 27 to 32.

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