Why People in the USA File for Divorce

In 2018 in the United States, almost 7 people per 1,000 are getting married, while just over 3 people per 1,000 are getting divorced.

This means that nearly 50 percent of U.S. marriages end in separation or divorce. 41% of first marriages end in divorce; 60% of second marriages; and 73% of third. The United States has the 6th highest divorce rate in the world.

U.S. wives are more likely to file for divorce than U.S. husbands. Thirty is the average age for people divorcing for the first time in this country.

Professions with the highest divorce rates include dancers, bartenders, massage therapists, gaming service workers, nurses, and home care aids. Professions with the lowest divorce rates include agricultural engineers, optometrists, clergy, podiatrists, farmers, and dentists.

Why do people in the United States get divorced?

When is the right time to contact a divorce lawyer?

Reasons for U.S. Divorces

A little research brings up a wide range of reasons, with several recurring ones.

1. Infidelity

Cheating on a spouse is one of the top reasons for divorce. The reason for an extra-marital affair is often not out-of-control passion and a giving in to temptation, however. Cheating often arises from anger and resentment over aspects of the marriage relationship, as well as lack of emotional intimacy.

2. Differences in Money Handling

Having too little money is infrequently the cause of a marriage breakdown. More often, it is the difference in how money is handled, including spending habits and saving habits, that create divisive and irreconcilable clashes.

3. Lack of Intimacy

This includes sexual intimacy as well as emotional intimacy. Where once a couple enjoyed connection and shared physical and emotional desire, somewhere along the way this tapers off. Busyness, care of children, and stress begin to hijack the closeness a couple feels. Misunderstandings and the feeling that one’s needs are not being met widen the emotional gap.

4. Communication Breakdowns/Inability to Resolve Conflict

Communication skills are not taught in schools, and many parents do not teach or model good communication or healthy conflict resolution. Most of today’s married couples are unable to navigate through conflict productively. Conversations devolve into arguments, emotion takes over, and both parties feel unheard and misunderstood. When arguments become the norm and nothing gets resolved, the marriage relationship is weakened and divorce can be the result.

5. Addictions and Abuse

Couples in the U.S. get divorced because the relationship has been destroyed by addictions. Addictions range from alcohol abuse to drug use to overwork to sex compulsions/porn use. They can also include relationship addictions, shopping/spending addictions, and addictions to power and control. Left untreated, addictions become a force in the marriage that undermines and ruins the relationship.

Physical or emotional abuse brings about divorce when the abused person has had enough of the abuse and summons the courage to leave.

6. Loss of Identity/Distinctness

A healthy marriage is one where both husband and wife maintain their identities and at least some separate interests. When pre-marriage interests are abandoned—hobbies, passions, and pursuits let go—and one or both partners become subsumed by the other or by the relationship, this does not create a vibrant and healthy marriage. At some point one or both partners “wakes up” and wants out to regain space and healthy identify.

7. Incompatibility

U.S. marriages end in divorce because differences that at first seemed like not a big deal later prove to be a very big deal. These differences include where a couple wants to live (country/city); having children (yes/no); religion (one wants the other to convert); career (one earns more; matters of childcare), etc. Differences may have been discussed before the marriage, but things changed after the marriage and compromise is not possible.

Divorce Rates in Florida and Fleming Island

When it comes to tying the knot and keeping that knot tied, Floridians do not do as well as their counterparts in the rest of the country. In fact, the knot unravels for 50,000 couples in Florida every year.

The Census Bureau determined that Florida has the 7th-highest divorce rate of all 50 U.S. states, and one out of five U.S. cities with high divorce rates is in the Sunshine State. Another study put Florida at #3 of all states for its divorce rate, only outranked by D.C. and Nevada.

Factors Affecting Florida Marriages

Why is the divorce rate so high in Florida?

It is common knowledge that Florida is considered a good place to execute a life “re-do”—i.e. the sunny state with miles of beaches draws people who want to leave their troubles and make a fresh start. They come from other parts of the United States and many come from other countries.

When a troubled marriage is the object of the Florida re-do, many couples find that after the location newness has worn off, the marriage troubles remain. Despite the sun and beaches, life is the same as it was before, the marriage frictions still exist, and the relationship hasn’t improved. Divorce follows.

Another contributing reason for Florida’s high divorce rate is the stress that many Florida couples find themselves enduring. Wallethub, a personal finance website, ranked Florida as one of the higher stressed states in the country. Florida ranked 16th out of the 50 states in a study that included stress factors such as average number of hours worked per week, employment opportunities, hours of adequate sleep, emotional health, crime rates, and percentage of people living in poverty.

A somewhat surprising contributing factor to Florida’s high divorce rate is the number of retirees who are choosing to end their marriages. Older people with 20-30 years of retirement ahead are more and more looking at whether or not they want to remain married. “Gray divorce” is a term that has been coined for this population sector that is choosing to untie the knot.

Florida’s divorce rate has also been boosted by immigrants who choose to end their marriages. Where couples with support networks are better able to stay together, people who have moved to Florida from other countries have left their support networks and have nowhere to turn for help and encouragement. Absent the support, marital issues become overwhelming and immigrant couples file for divorce, adding to the number of breakups in the state.

Divorce in Fleming Island, FL

Fleming Island, Florida, in recent years has claimed sixth position on a Men’s Health list of 10 cities in the United States with the highest divorce rates (only outranked by Little Rock, AR; Cheyenne, WY; Norfolk, VA; Albuquerque, NM; and Charleston, WV).

It looks like divorce lawyers in Fleming Island, FL have plenty of work to do!

The Good News

Despite the dismal divorce statistics for the state, the Florida Department of Public Health has said that Florida’s divorce rate has actually decreased over the past ten years. In fact, it is the lowest it has been since the 1980s. Additionally, the number of couples choosing to tie the knot has increased by 20% since 2014.

An initiative launched in Fleming Island to reduce the city’s divorce rate has seen preliminary success in its first 24 months. Called the Culture of Freedom Initiative, its programs include marriage preparation, marriage wellness, and faith development. Churches and local civic organizations have conducted these programs for over 35,000 participants.

After 24 months, third-party outside analysts have confirmed that Fleming Island’s divorce rate has dropped by 28 percent. This has resulted in children remaining in intact homes and a taxpayer savings of an estimated $50 million. The initiative is continuing its efforts in a third year of implementation.