Men, Women and Divorce: Who’s Happier?
For many married couples, making the decision to divorce is difficult. Numerous studies have been done with respect to whether men or women are the first to initiate a divorce or breakup. However, one of the latest studies, which was presented at the American Sociological Association’s 110th annual meeting last year, found that when it comes to divorce, women are more likely than men to initiate it -- and when it comes to non-marital relationships, women are just as likely as men to end those too.
The Stanford University associate professor of sociology who authored the study considered data based on the heterosexual relationships of over 2,200 adults between the ages of 19 and 94. In particular, the professor’s analysis focused on statistics from 2009 to 2015 that stem from a national survey that was taken entitled, How Couples Meet and Stay Together. The analysis revealed that women initiated 69 percent of all divorces and there was no significant difference statistically between the percentage of breakups initiated by unmarried couples.
A Closer Look at the Findings
The associate professor noted that in prior studies, social scientists argued that women initiated most divorces because when it came to the difficulties of a relationship, women were more sensitive to them than men. However, if that were the case, women would initiate the end of both marriages and non-marital relationships at the same rate. According to the professor, “women seem to have a predominant role in initiating divorces in the U.S. as far back as there is data from a variety of sources, back to the 1940s.”
What About After the Divorce?
When it comes to relationships, there seems to be a disparity between what women want and expect versus what they actually get during marriage -- which often leaves many women dissatisfied and more inclined to “opt out” of the marriage. Still, we often have an image of women who have gone through a divorce or breakup as being fed-up and bitter, while their male counterparts are practically celebrating and glad to be free.
Another survey, which was conducted by legal research company Avvo, showed that out of 2,000 adults, 75 percent of divorced women stated they had no regrets over their decision to part ways with their ex, whereas only 61 percent of divorced men felt the same. The survey also noted that 75 percent of women stated that they would rather be by themselves and be happy and successful than be in an unhappy relationship, while only 58 percent of men felt the same.
For many, a relationship that involves constant unhappiness or high-level conflicts can be particularly harmful to various other aspects of their lives -- especially with respect to their health and career. While it is true that life after a breakup or divorce will require a number of changes and adjustments that may bring about a whole new set of challenges, it still may be the better option for certain individuals.
If you are contemplating divorce and you have questions about your rights and
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