First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby with the baby carriage… there’s a reason divorce doesn’t fit so nicely into that little nursery rhyme song — it’s not exactly the most fun of subjects, now it is? And with most of us going into our nuptials with that little voice in our head telling us that half of marriages end in divorce, well let’s just say it’s easier not to think about it at all.
Well here’s the good news — apparently that well-known stat isn’t exactly a stat at all, but something quoted from a flawed set of data. According to website FlowingData, those numbers don’t follow couples as they marry and grow older; instead researchers have traditionally taken that year’s marriage stat and divided it by that year’s divorce stat, coming up with a rough estimate of half. But that couldn’t be further from the truth.
Furthermore, the site has come up with a deeper set of criteria that will supposedly help you to find out how likely you are to actually get divorced in the years to come. Sadly, it doesn’t incorporate stuff like whether he leaves the toilet seat up or if she hogs all of the closet space, but it does begin to examine the bigger picture of race, education and employment status.
As it turns out, women are more likely to get divorced than men but the reason is still unclear. It could be that men wait until they’re older to tie the knot, or it could be because they tend to die younger. But as for half of us breaking ties? Not so much.
For example, an employed female is 38 per cent likely to get divorced by the time she’s 72 years old compared to a male that age, at 32 per cent. If either sex is unemployed, that jumps to 43 and 42 per cent respectively.
Obviously no one wants to think of themselves as a stat, but this gives us hope that the long-term picture isn’t as bleak as we once thought. Want to up that chance a little more? Aside from chore-splitting and shaking off those small things, we suggest lots and lots of date nights. And sex. Because even though attaining intimacy can be hard (see anyone with kids), there’s a saying for that too: if you don’t use it, you lose it.