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Do children cause divorceOur online divorce service at was established to ease the burden of the divorce process. Along the way, we started to see certain trends in divorce statistics — some surprising, some not so much. But when it comes to the breakup of marriages where children are involved, the findings definitely went beyond our instincts.

The More Things Change, The More They Stay The Same

Divorce researcher Po Bronson once observed that for couples without children “the divorce rate in 1948 was 15.3 per 1,000. Where one child was present, the estimate rate was 11.6 per 1,000.”

Bronson continued: “The figure thus continues to decrease, and in families with four or more children, it was 4.6. Altogether, the rate for couples with children was 8.8 per 1,000. In other words, the rate for childless couples was almost double the rate for families with children.”

But What About Present Divorce Statistics?

While Bronson’s research is referring to a world the existed 60 years ago, a 2011 Huffington Post article found the data continued to ring true with childless couples 26 percent more likely to get a divorce than couples with kids.

Translation: while couples with children usually have more money and free time, they also seem to have less reason for staying together.

Lori Buckley, a certified sex therapist, told HuffPo that she had many couples “come into my office and the only reason they are working on the relationship is because of the children.” This begs the question:

Why Do Unhappy Couples Work On Their Relationships “For The Kids”? 

A recent article in The Daily Mail seems to indicate why. According to new research, children who come from “broken homes” are more likely to be violent, unhappy, and feel unfulfilled in their lives. Parents hear these stories, and they’re understandably reluctant to take the step of ending a marriage.

Meanwhile, if something isn’t working in a childless relationship, it’s much easier to divvy up the finances in an agreeable manner and go separate ways. So while children may be enormous stressors on a relationship, they also have a tendency of bringing parents together.

It’s been said that marriage is work, and the research above indicates that parents grasp the work involved and are more willing to put in the effort to making things last. On the other hand, when marriages don’t work out, childless couples have a tendency to make a cleaner split.

Do you believe children are more likely to make marriage work?

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