Greatest Predictors of Divorce

A study conducted by Kansas State University researchers and reported upon in the Huffington Post has recently made ripples in the divorce community. The study found that “couples who argued about money early in their relationships—regardless of their income, debt or net worth—were at greater risk for divorce.” Sonya Britt, a top researcher on the report, told the Huffington Post that “it doesn’t matter how long ago it was, but when they were first together and already arguing about money, there is a good chance they are going to have poor relationship satisfaction.” This makes sense. Financial arguments have long been pinpointed as a top reason for divorce; arguments that involve both how much money gets spent and what it’s being spent on.

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According to The New York Times, a2009 study conducted by Jeffrey Dew at Utah State University found that “couples who reported disagreeing about finance once a week were over 30 percent more likely to get divorced than couples who reported disagreeing about finances a few times a month.” This study considered relationships not just in the beginning stages, such as the one that came out of Kansas State University, but also longer-term marriages. Interestingly, Dew’s study found that “for wives, disagreements over finances and sex were good predictors of divorce, but finance disputes were much stronger predictors. For husbands, financial disagreements were the only type of common disagreement that predicted whether they would get a divorce.”

Yet, divorce should not be considered to be solely predictable or relatable because of financial disputes. According to Psychology Today, communication, or the lack thereof, is the greatest predictor of divorce. “Dr. John Gottman,” reportsPsychology Today, “a foremost expert on couple studies, concluded after 20 years of research that the single best predictor of divorce is when one or both partners show contempt in the relationship.”

If you or someone you know is considering divorce because of financial disagreements, communication breakdown, or any other reason, don’t go through it alone. Contact an experienced Chicago divorce attorney today.

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