September 12, 2007 — If you've been following the news lately, a lot of differing information has been reported about divorce.
While divorce lawyers have been saying that divorces in the United States are reaching their peak season at the end of summer, researchers have noted how the divorce rate in the country has declined, in large part due to the aging U.S. population. These researchers have said that the common myth that every one in two marriages will end in divorce is being turned on its head.
More marriages are succeeding, according to researchers like Dr. Janet Belsky of Middle State University. Belsky attributed this decline in the U.S. divorce rate to the fact that the general population is much older and that people tend to get divorced when they are younger.
A recent New York Times story detailed research findings indicating that 60 percent of marriages end in divorce during the first decade of the union. However, college-educated people have actually experienced a decline in divorce during the first 10 years of marriage.
Specifically, only 16 percent of college-educated people who married between 1990 and 1994 got a divorce during the first 10 years of marriage as compared to 27 percent of college-educated people who married between 1970 and 1974. Belsky said she was not surprised at this finding, as more and more people have gone to college in the last 40 years.
While researchers are indicating that the divorce rate has dropped, divorce lawyers are currently dealing with one of their busiest seasons. Rivaled only by the end of the Christmas season, the end of the summer is typically marked by phones ringing off the hooks in the offices of divorce attorneys.
In a recent UPI story, divorce attorneys detailed why the end of summer is typically a high time for divorce filings after school starts. Louisville, Kentucky divorce lawyer William Hoge said in the story that the summer tends to be less-stressful and that couples tend to put off or hold on decisions on divorce during that time frame.
However, once family vacations end, school starts and life goes back to normal, Hoge said that couples decide to divorce. As California family law attorney James Hennenhoefer said in the story, the end of the summer is often a "deferral" of a decision on divorce that had been made months earlier.
This is similar during Christmas as couples prefer to get their families through the holidays before filing for divorce. With Christmas being one of the most hectic holidays around, it typically makes sense for couples to not add more to their plate and thus hold off on divorce until after the New Year.