Divorce: Effects and Resulting Family Issues

How Many Marriages End in Divorce?

Over fifty percent of first marriages end in divorce in the United States. Sixty percent of second marriages end in divorce, and the percentage of third marriages ending in divorce is even higher. These are bracing statistics and represent a sweeping change in the experience of marriage over the last several generations.

Prior to World War II, the majority of marriages ended with the death of one of the partners. Everyone knows stories (or is living one) of parents who "stayed together for the children."

The Effects of Divorce on Partners and Children

Divorce affects each partner differently. It is different to leave than to be left; the leaver has usually been thinking about divorce for a long time before talking openly about it. The person being left often feels in shock, and must deal with strong emotions about a breakup while simultaneously making many other life adjustments.

Divorce also may have profound effects on children. The divorcing process separates one household into two, and so children come to have "mom's house and dad's house." Many of the books in the self-help section on divorce sensitively track children?s adjustment to divorce, paying attention to the different ages of the children at the time of the divorce.

Additional Topics Related to Divorce:

Grief and Bereavement

Parenting: Teenagers

Parenting: Toddlers to Pre-Teens

Parenting: Birth to Twelve Months

Self Esteem and Self Confidence