Marriage is the ultimate goal for most couples. Unfortunately, getting married isn’t always the fairytale people hope it will be. While the divorce rate has dropped a bit in the last several years, it’s still not uncommon for a marriage to end in divorce.
The best way to prevent divorce in your marriage is to learn how to communicate effectively. But even communication isn’t always the answer. So why do so many marriages end in divorce and who files for divorce more often? We’ll evaluate these divorce statistics and more.
Divorce Statistics in the United States
While the numbers have declined from the astonishing 50% mark, an estimated 41% of first marriages still end in divorce. For subsequent marriages, that number increases dramatically to 60% of second marriages and an astonishing 73% of third marriages.
When it comes to the cost of divorce, an uncontested divorce will run you an average of $4,100 while the total average cost of divorce is closer to $13,000. When complications arise regarding child support or child custody, that number easily swells to almost $24,000. It is important to note that these are simply averages and that there are many outliers on either side of these averages. The best way to determine a more accurate cost for your divorce is to speak with a skilled and experienced divorce attorney.
Divorce Rate by Gender
When it comes to men and women, there’s a clear answer as to who is filing for divorce more often. Nearly 70 percent of divorces are initiated by the wife. In addition, over 50% of divorced wives never want to remarry while only about 30% of men express that same sentiment.
Seeing as most divorces are initiated by women, men can use this statistic to make sure they are being mindful of their wives’ needs and wants. For both women and men, the average length of a first marriage that ends in divorce is just shy of 8 years. However, when it comes to second marriages that end in divorce, women are less likely to stick around as long as their male counterparts.
When it comes to same-sex divorce, female couples make up the majority, coming in at over 70% of same-sex divorces.
Why Women Are Much More Likely Than Men to Initiate Divorce
So, why are so many divorces initiated by the wife as opposed to the husband? One theory is that, as women continue to gain their own independence they aren’t as reliant on their husband as they once were. While they previously may have felt that they had no choice but to tolerate a less-than-ideal marriage, now they have more of a choice. They can pursue their career, financial independence, and a partner that is a better fit for them. Or they may choose not to remarry and simply enjoy life on their own terms.
3 Reasons Why Women Initiate Divorce More Often Than Men
When it all comes down to it, there are three major reasons why such a high percentage of divorces are initiated by women.
Women are more likely to feel held back by the marriage.
It’s not uncommon for women these days to feel like they have the world on their shoulders. Many women are trying their best to balance child-rearing, housework, cooking, and being a good partner all while working a full-time or part-time job (or multiple jobs in some cases). In fact, statistics show that women make up more than half of the workforce in the United States. Yet, in many relationships, they are also the ones viewed as primarily responsible for household domestic responsibilities.
While many men do help out their wives with the chores and caring for children, it is statistically proven that the traditional views of marriage are well behind the times when it comes to gender expectations. Even if women don’t feel this pressure from their husbands, there’s a good chance they feel it from other people in their lives and society around them.
Women often take on more of the emotional burden.
Women also tend to take on more of the emotional burden when it comes to marriage and raising children. This is a side effect of the society we’ve built where men are generally expected to not show emotion. As a result, they’re often not taught how to process their emotions. They’re also less likely to seek professional help when needed. In the end, this can put additional emotional burdens on their partner. This is why it’s so important that we encourage men to work on their own mental health as well as their communication skills.
Women no longer tolerate consistent unacceptable behavior.
While women may have once felt as though they had no choice but to tolerate unacceptable behavior because they were so reliant on their husbands, that is no longer the case in many instances. For the most part, women are no longer willing to put up with being mistreated, abused, or infidelity because they are now in a situation where they’re better able to earn their own money and get financing for a home or car. Modern women have many more resources available to them these days and leaving a bad marriage is now an option. This is especially true for college educated women who feel financially secure.
Do You Have Questions or Concerns about Divorce?
If you have questions about divorce, then speak with a qualified and experienced lawyer. The Jimenez Law Firm has been helping couples through each stage of the divorce process from filling out divorce papers, to mediation, to the final divorce hearing.
If you’re considering filing for divorce, if your spouse has already filed for divorce, if you’re worried about the effects of divorce on children, the Jimenez Law Firm is here to answer your questions and help you through this difficult time. Our experienced and professional family law attorneys are here to discuss your case and answer your questions.