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Researchers study seasonal pattern of divorce

Some couples in Massachusetts may now be struggling with whether their relationship will continue in the future. Although a difficult decision to make, ending a failing relationship is often in the best interest of all involved, including children. A study conducted by a sociology professor and doctoral candidate has recently shed some light on when people choose to file for divorce.

The study reviewed data from 37 counties in another state. Researchers were somewhat surprised when a seasonal pattern of divorce rates was revealed -- filings spike in March and August. They speculate that it is considered taboo to file for divorce during the winter holidays or during vacation. Additionally, they claim that couples often view holiday celebrations and vacations with a sense of anticipation and hope. Unfortunately, couples can feel disillusioned if their time together does not meet their expectations.

Based on the statistics, researchers believe that couples are motivated to act quickly following a summer vacation and create a filing before children return to school. They hypothesize that there may be a slight delay following winter holidays as couples work to arrange their finances. Also, they argue that longer days in spring could increase a person's mood, motivating him or her to act.

Regardless of the time of year, some couples in Massachusetts ultimately come to the conclusion that their relationship is no longer viable and may even be detrimental to children of the relationship. Filing for divorce can be the first step to a happier, more fulfilling future. A conversation with an experienced divorce attorney can help a person contemplating the next step in his or her life understand the available options and initiate proceedings.

Source: washington.edu, "Is divorce seasonal? UW research shows biannual spike in divorce filings", Deborah Bach, Aug. 21, 2026

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