The possibility of divorce is a side of the institution of marriage that is never mentioned in children’s fairy tales. No, usually prince and princess ride off into the sunset together at the end and are said to have lived “happily ever after.”
In fact, adults, too, usually put the idea of divorce out of their minds when they get married. Nobody wants to consider the possibility that they, too, could get a divorce one day.
And yet, we all know at some level that divorce is a very real possibility for any marriage to have to face one day. Of course, the situation is complicated even further when there are children involved.
Maybe you and your spouse are in the process of considering a divorce, or maybe you know someone who is going through one right now. Here are 5 statistics about United States marriages and divorces that you may find interesting and useful:
1. How many people get married in the U.S. each year?
While the numbers vary each year, over the past half-decade or so about 2.3 million people have gotten married annually.
2. Which states have the highest divorce rates?
Did you know that divorce rates vary significantly by state? It’s true! The states with the highest percentage of marriages ending in divorce are Nevada, Arkansas, and Wyoming (in that order).
3. How many people pay child support?
The presence of children in the family always complicates a divorce. Part of that complication is the fact that one parent (usually the father) ends up paying money to the mother each month in the form of child support. Currently, about 7.8 million Americans pay billions of dollars in child support to their ex-spouses each year.
4. What percentage of marriages end in divorce?
As with all statistics, the numbers vary depending upon whom you ask. But, on average, about 40-50% of first marriages end in divorce. Meanwhile, 60-67% of second marriages and 73-74% of third marriages end in the same way.
In short, the more marriages someone or their partner has had, the higher the couple’s chances of one day getting a divorce.
5. How do childless couples compare to couples with children when it comes to their divorce rate?
Couples with children have a slightly lower rate of divorce than do childless couples.
In some cases, a relationship can become so dysfunctional that divorce may be the only viable option. However, if the love is still there at some level, many couples have the opportunity to turn things around and find a way to stay happily married.