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What are the Common Predictors of Divorce?

Published February 24, 2020

The key to a successful marriage has been the subject of speculation, discussion, and research over time. As each marriage is different, it is challenging to identify any one “magic” ingredient that can predict a long-lasting and happy union. You may recall that we explored the ramifications of a 2018 study in one of our previous posts, where we focused on a few predictors of divorce among same-sex and heterosexual couples.

It is worth revisiting the findings of this study as we take a closer look at a few key factors that predict the longevity or the eventual dissolution of marriage.

Longevity and Age

This particular study showed that the longer the relationship has lasted, the stronger the marriage tended to be. For instance, each year that the couple remained together reduced the probability of divorce by 9 percent. The age of the individuals was also a significant predictor of the marriage’s strength; the older the partners were, the more likely they were to stay married.

Relationship Quality

While this category is difficult to define, it basically refers to how each partner felt about the quality of their marriage. For instance, does an individual in a marriage feel supported, satisfied, and loved? Do they feel like their marriage is a true partnership? While this definition is subjective, the study found it to be a major predictor in the overall success of the marriage. For each unit of increase in relationship quality, as reported by the individuals in the partnership, the likelihood of divorce or separation dropped by 61 percent. This clearly indicates that those who exhibit positive feelings about their marriage are likely to practice healthy relationship habits that contribute to the longevity of their union.

Income Level and Children

Somewhat surprisingly, this particular study found that income levels and whether or not the couple had children did not impact the rate of divorce. While other studies may have examined these factors in greater depth, this longitudinal study explored all types of marriages and was quite comprehensive. So, whether the couple is wealthy or working-class, and whether they have no children or four, these factors do not predict the likelihood of their marriage ending in divorce.

When Divorce Seems Inevitable

If you realize that you are not happy in your marriage and you feel that divorce would be the best way for you and your partner to move on with your lives, you should seek the assistance of a compassionate and knowledgeable divorce attorney who can help you understand all of your options. Reach out to Lee Tyler Family Law, P.C. today at (503) 233-8868 to speak to a trusted collaborative divorce lawyer who is dedicated to serving Portland-area couples.

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