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Divorce rate actually lower than 50 percent

Massachusetts residents are likely familiar with the statistic often cited by the media that 50 percent of marriages end in divorce. While that may have been true in the 1970s and 1980s, figures show that the divorce rate has been falling steadily for several years. Observers say that if current trends continue, the divorce rate will fall to about a third in the near future.

Experts are poring over the figures to determine why the divorce rate is dropping just as they studied the statistics in the 1970s when the numbers of couples splitting up was on the rise. Many believe that couples are staying together today for the same reason that they decided to divorce in decades past. In the 1970s and 1980s, the traditional role of the wife as a homemaker changed as millions of women entered the workforce. While this upheaval placed never before seen stresses on domestic life 40 years ago, two incomes are now considered normal, stable and often necessary.

Another factor that may be influencing falling divorce rates is the ages of those getting married. Men are four years older when they walk down the aisle today than they were in the 1950s, and women are six years older when they marry than their counterparts of a half century ago.

Upbeat media coverage of falling divorce rates is not likely to provide much consolation for spouses who have decided to take this difficult step. A family law attorney will likely understand how the emotional strain of the divorce process can lead to heated discussions and combative negotiations. By calling upon their experience, an attorney may be able to help divorcing spouses reach an amicable compromise over potentially contentious matters such as property division, spousal support, and child custody and visitation.

Source: The Huffington Post, "The Truth About The Divorce Rate Is Surprisingly Optimistic", Brittany Wong, December 02, 2014

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