In today’s society, divorce has become the norm. A comprehensive study conducted by the American Bureau of Labor Statistics last year shows that, about 43% of all marriages that occurred between ages 15 and 46 ended in divorce (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2013). Similar studies that have been conducted by other organizations and individuals also estimate the divorce rates in America to be between 30% and 40%. Therefore, the overall divorce rate in America is above 30%.
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Divorce has several causes that fall into three main categories viz. affective issues, abusive behavior, and external pressure. Affective issues take the form of communication problems and infidelity among others. Abusive behavior, on the other hand, includes physical violence, drug abuse, and verbal violence. Finally, external pressure consists of financial problems, work issues, health issues, and family pressure (Nevid & Rathus, 2013).
Marriage begins to fail when communication dies. At that point, couples tend to stay apart and in so doing, they allow thoughts of divorce to overwhelm them. Infidelity for its part, shatters all the three components of love at once causing the sentimental attachment and trust that existed between partners to wane suddenly (Acker & Davis, 1992). In the long run, divorce becomes an attractive option for both partners (Nevid & Rathus, 2013). Moreover, when one partner suddenly becomes violent towards the other, the love bond between them weakens. Consequently, the future of their marriage becomes shaky. Once the commitment aspect is affected, love begins to grow cold, thus, paving the way for a divorce (Acker & Davis, 1992).
External pressures for their part, cause divorce by attacking the foundation of marriages. Most marriages lack a solid foundation. As a result, they cannot stand the turbulence that is caused by external factors such as financial strains, work-related pressures, and interference from in-laws and other family members (Nevid & Rathus, 2013). These external pressures, lower marital satisfaction and create tension between partners. Consequently, they adversely affect intimacy and passion thereby causing divorce.
Acker, M., & Davis, M. (1992). Intimacy, passion and commitment in adult romantic relationships: A test of the triangular theory of love. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 9(1), 21-50.
Nevid, J. S., & Rathus, S. A. (2013). Psychology and the challenges of life: Adjustment and growth (12th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2013). Marriage and divorce: Patterns by gender, race, and educational attainment. Web.