Men think about divorce more than women

family law

Men are more likely to consider the possibility of divorce than women, new research suggests.

In a survey of more than 2,300 people almost a quarter – 24 per cent – of married men claimed they had at least thought about bringing their relationship to an end. By contrast only 11 per cent of married women reported similar feelings.

Overall one in five married people said they had thought about divorce and only seven per cent claimed they had “definitely considered” the possibility. The majority of those polled – 62 per cent – said they were “very satisfied” with their marriage while 26 per cent were “pretty satisfied”.

Only 12 per cent of married people said they were either “unsatisfied” or “unhappy” with their relationship.

The survey was conducted by the United States-based lawyer search website Avvo. Author Dr Nika Kabiri is the site’s Law and Society analyst. She suggested that the discrepancy between the numbers who said they were not happy with their marriage and those who had thought about breaking up was not all that surprising. Many people who consider splitting up are “simply wondering what other possibilities are out there, even if you are happy where you are”.

Dr Kabiri explained:

“Considering divorce is part of evaluating the health of a marriage … Doing so doesn’t necessarily mean you’re serious about leaving.”

Although men were twice as likely to think about the end of their relationship, previous studies and statistics have shown that wives initiate divorce more often than husbands. Official figures from Ireland revealed that almost two thirds of all divorces in Ireland in 2015 were initiated by women.

Read the full Avvo survey here.

Photo by Cordell and Cordell via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence.

Stowe Family Law Web Team

View more from this author


Andy - March 8, 2017 at 7:19pm

Well, lets look at the statistics..
Firstly women just are gold diggers within the eyes of the law and second women only prolong the divorce due to taking the extra time to syphon off more family finances and of course bleeding poverty with a weapon used as children…
Need I say any more…

Nemo Momenti - March 8, 2017 at 7:29pm

Men think more about divorce but twice as many women as men initiate divorce. Presumably, this means that women just don’t think before they act.

Elena - March 9, 2017 at 7:22am

More men think about ending the marriage but they don’t do it. Why? Is it to do that they have to pay for the divorce filing fee? Mine certainly did!

Yvie - March 9, 2017 at 9:21am

I should image a large proportion of men think about divorce as a last resort, particularly when they have children. Women seem to initiate divorce i many cases, as it can be to their advantage if they remain in possession of the marital home and the children.

Andrew - March 9, 2017 at 5:32pm

Since the grounds for divorce were made the same for both sexes in 1923 – before then adultery by a husband was not a ground! – about two-thirds of petitions have been by wives. They are more likely than men to issue behaviour petitions and men are more likely than women to issue adultery petitions.
There have been times when the law has temporarily changed so as to distort the figures; after the five-year petition was introduced in 1971 there was a rush of male petitions; when the basis of jurisdiction was extended during the war to include residence there was a rush of female petitions (women who had married American or Commonwealth servicemen and were therefore not domiciled in England); and before pension sharing was introduced (1 December 2000) female petitions dried up and male petitions abounded.
But it’s been about two to one over time ever since 1923.
I mentioned once a man I knew whose only asset worth arguing over was the public service index-linked pension he would one day draw. His wife’s petition arrived in the post on 1 December 2000. I told him to bang in the acknowledgement that day, saying he had received it by post on that day, to send the form by recorded delivery, and to keep the receipt from the Post Office as if his life depended on it – because his pension did. I have sometimes wondered whether his ex-wife sued her solicitors!

Leave a comment