How to Know If Your Marriage Will End in Divorce, According to Experts
Meryl Streep and her husband of 45 years, Don Gummer, have been separated for more than six years, shedding light on the fact that even long-term marriages can face turbulence. Although no one can predict the future of a marriage with certainty, there are important warning signs that can suggest potential problems. Identifying these signs early is essential for addressing underlying issues and potentially avoiding a divorce. Experts have conducted studies to uncover these vital signs that can indicate potential problems and even predict divorce outcomes.
Getting married at the wrong age.
The best time to get married is when you genuinely feel ready and have found someone you believe you can spend your whole life with. However, research shows that certain age groups have a higher risk of divorce.
For example, couples who marry as teenagers or in their mid-30s or later are more likely to divorce compared to those who marry in their late 20s or early 30s. Teenage couples are especially at risk. After the age of 32, the chance of divorce goes up by about 5% each year, as shown by a study.
Having a husband who works part-time.
Researchers found that a couple’s finances aren’t the main factor affecting their chances of divorce. Instead, it’s how they share responsibilities within their relationship. Couples where the husband didn’t work full-time had a 3.3% chance of divorcing in the following year, while it was lower at 2.5% for couples where the husband had a full-time job, according to research.
Interestingly, whether or not wives worked full-time didn’t have a significant impact on the likelihood of divorce. The reason for it might be that the traditional idea of the husband as the sole breadwinner still plays a role in the stability of a marriage.
Showing too much affection as newlyweds.
It’s essential to show affection as newlyweds, such as hugging, kissing, and holding hands, but too much can be problematic. Psychologists conducted a 13-year study, following 168 couples from their wedding day onward.
One intriguing finding from the study was that newlywed couples who eventually divorced after seven or more years of marriage displayed an exceptionally high level of affection. They showed about one-third more affection than couples who remained happily married. Experts explain that couples who start their marriages with intense romantic bliss are more likely to divorce, as sustaining such intensity can be challenging.
Dropping out of high school.
Research shows that couples who spend more time on their education have a lower chance of getting divorced. Marriages of people with more education are less likely to end in divorce, a study claims. For instance, over 50% of marriages where at least one spouse did not finish high school ended in divorce, while only around 30% of marriages among college graduates faced the same fate. This connection may be because lower levels of education often lead to lower income, which, in turn, can result in a more stressful life.
Pulling away during an argument.
Do you or your partner tend to close off when faced with difficult conversations? If so, it’s not a positive sign. Couples who engage in “demand/withdraw” patterns — where one partner pushes for discussion and the other responds with silence — tend to be less content in their relationships.
Breaking this pattern is challenging because each partner often believes the other is to blame for the problem. It involves recognizing how your own actions play a part in the issue and adopting more considerate conflict-resolution approaches. This means understanding how your own behavior contributes to the problem and using kinder ways to resolve conflicts.
In Japan, lots of married couples sleep in separate beds, and it turns out that this can actually reinvigorate their relationships. What’s even more interesting is that Gwyneth Paltrow also shares this view, seeing separate sleeping as an essential element for a happy and long-lasting marriage.