Divorce Lawyer Examines Study the Keys to “Divorce-Proofing” Marriages

Our Farifax, VA divorce attorneys see a staggering variety of clients in diverse circumstances. So it certainly intrigued us when we read in the popular press about the results of a new divorce study that claimed to have found the keys to “divorce-proofing” marriages. Hugo Mialon and Andrew Francis, researchers at Emory University, analyzed 3,000 married couples in the United States and overseas to try to identify factors that could predict future divorces.

The metrics they considered included:

  • Religious attendance;
  • How much money the couple spent on wedding rings;
  • How much money they spent on the marriage ceremony and who attended;
  • Annual income;
  • How important each partner considered his/her spouse’s attractiveness and income.

Because this study won so much attention in the popular media, we’re going to address it in two posts. In today’s post, let’s talk a little bit about what the study found. In tomorrow’s post, we’ll discuss its possible flaws and implications for the popular culture.

First off, Mialon and Francis found that the relative likelihood of divorce dropped substantially if a couple had dated for three or more years before getting engaged. Those who waited to get engaged were 39% less likely to get divorced.

Income also predicts divorce. Couples who earned $50,000 or more a year combined were 39% less likely to get divorced than couples who made $0 to $25,000 a year combined. When men said their partners’ looks were critical, their marriages were 15% more likely to split up. Women who said their partners’ level of wealth was critical, meanwhile, they were 60% more likely to split up. Relative risk of divorce can also be measured by the size of your wedding. Couples who had a big wedding (101+ people) were 84% less likely to get divorced than people tied the knot solo. In general, the more people at the wedding, the less likely you will be to get divorced.

We’ll take a closer look at what all these statistics mean in our next article. For now, if you need help with questions about your divorce or child custody negotiations, contact a Fairfax, Virginia divorce attorney today for a free consultation at 703-370-5555.

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