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Are divorce rates declining or increasing after the pandemic?

Even if this seems like a long time ago, before COVID-19, divorce rates were declining and it might have to do with the Millenial Generation. According to the Atlantic, this is a Generation that is getting married later in life, where a good percentage has a college degree and where financial stability might come along a lot later than with other generations, and finally, it’s a generation that has faced the fact that Mental Health should be a priority. 

According to TIME:

New data show younger couples are approaching relationships very differently from baby boomers, who married young, divorced, remarried and so on. Generation X and especially millennials are being pickier about who they marry, tying the knot at older ages when education, careers and finances are on track. The result is a U.S. divorce rate that dropped 18 percent from 2008 to 2016, according to an analysis by University of Maryland sociology professor Philip Cohen.

A study, from the University of Maryland found that there was a quantified drop-off between 2008 and 2016, where the divorce rate declined by 18% overall. But this might have to do with the fact that gen X does not only put off marriage for a couple of years (rising the median age of marriage to 30 for men and 28 for women, when at the beginning of the 2000s, the median age was 27 for men and 25 for women).

Numbers might be deceiving in this case. Even if divorce rates seemed to decline, it could just mean that fewer couples were getting married.

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What will happen to divorce after the pandemic

Experts predict that there will be a spike in divorces after and during this pandemic season. Couples who live together have spent much more time together and new challenges to face that the might not have expected: unemployment, being unable to go out, homeschooling the children and not being able to spend time alone, and other challenges.

Many lawyers find that divorce rates increase right after regular holidays:

A study from the University of Washington demonstrated that divorces usually increase after the summer months or after holidays when couples are together for longer periods of time. That’s why January is called divorce month. Similarly, couples who do not live together may be forced to take long periods of time apart or re-evaluate wedding plans, which can create  a new set of stressors and lead to breakups.

At this moment, couples have spent many months social distancing, even if the if it is not very strict, it might be weighing heavy on any relationship.

As the Newyork post recently published:

The number of people looking for divorces was 34 percent higher from March through June compared to 2019.

Of course, there are other factors that are not coronavirus related that might have already set out a couple on higher odds for divorce: such as age difference, getting married too young, lack of commitment, etc.

In the end, what we see after the pandemic might just be an acceleration of what is to come. How have you been handling the pandemic and your relationship with your partner?

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