call us630-584-4800

Free Consultations

Debunking the Myth about Divorce Rates

Posted on in Divorce

family law, Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family law,The New York Times recently published an article debunking the widely held “myth” about sky-high divorce rates. Contrary to popular belief, “It is no longer true that the divorce rate is rising, or that half of all marriages end in divorce. It has not been for some time.” The truth is that the divorce rate peaked three decades ago and has been in decline ever since. According to the numbers:

  • Of couples who married in the 1970s and 1980s, 65 percent reached their 15th wedding anniversary;
  • Of couples who married in the 1990s, 70 percent have reached their 15th wedding anniversary; and
  • Of college-educated couples who married in the early 2000s, 89 percent have reached their 7th anniversary.

Based on these trends, experts predict that only one-third of marriages will end in divorce. That number is starkly different from the 50 percent statistic commonly cited by cable talk show hosts and other talking heads. However, part of that decline can be attributed to falling marriage rates. A recent Pew Research Report found that 20 percent of adults who are older than 25 have never married. Compare that to the nine percent of adults older than 25 in 1960 who had never married.

Even though fewer Americans are getting married, those who do marry are staying together longer. Here are several reasons that explain the declining divorce rate:

  • Some consider the higher rates of the 1970s and the 1980s to be a product of a feminist movement. New societal norms (including the acceptance of women as breadwinners) have eliminated the reasons that some women initiated divorce during that era.
  • People are marrying later. On average in the 1950s, men were 23 years old when they married while women were 20 years old. By 2004, the median marriage age climbed to 27 for men and 26 for women.
  • Societal acceptance of single-parent families has resulted in fewer ill-fated shotgun weddings.
  • Similarly, society now accepts couples living together before marriage. The result is that more couples who would have divorced now break up before taking the marriage plunge.
  • The growing number of women in the workforce means that marriage is no longer an economic necessity for them. That means more women can marry for love instead of for food and shelter.
While it is true that fewer marriages end in divorce, it is equally true that divorce is still an unfortunate reality for many couples. Our experienced Kane County divorce attorneys can help prepare for that possibility by crafting a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement to protect your financial assets. Our attorneys can also guide you through the divorce process. We handle everything, from division of marital property to child custody arrangements. Contact us today for a consultation. We can assist those in the St. Charles area.
Back to Top