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Study suggests divorce may be contagious

A New Orleans author has weighed in on an interesting new divorce study. The study, which originates from Brown University, suggests that divorce may actually be contagious and can spread between family and friends.

The study indicates that a friend or family member getting divorced can inspire individuals to re-evaluate their own marital relationships. In doing so, they will consider several factors, such as whether they’ll be able to manage financially.

They may also realize that their support system includes others who are in the same boat, making them feel more socially comfortable with getting a divorce. Knowing others who have been through it may also reduce a sense of stigma or embarrassment about their marriage not succeeding. People who are divorcing may also be predisposed to looking at their own marriage in a reflective manner, and making decisions about staying with it or not.

The topic is particularly relevant in view of recent data from the National Center for Health Statistics. The data confirms that 43 percent of marriages end in divorce before reaching the 15-year anniversary. The Brown University study adds to that by noting that remarriages are even less successful.

Ultimately, decisions about divorce are very personal for each couple involved. Regardless of the factors that influenced a divorce, individuals contemplating divorce may want to consider what is really at stake in terms of their children, assets and other important matters. An experienced family law attorney can help by providing advice and options, including some that were not previously considered.

Source:, “A new study shows divorce can be contagious” Shana Rose, Oct. 30, 2013


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