Causes of High Divorce Rate in the United States Essay

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  3
Wordcount:  617 Words
Date:  2022-09-22


Marriage is an institution that is strongly supported within the American community and by the age of forty-five, a high number of people usually have been married at some point in their life. However, some do not last because divorce is very common in today's society especially in the United States. Almost half of all marriages end up in divorce. Over the past century, the divorce rate in the U.S. has tripled and it is worsening as about 20% of marriages end up in divorce within the first five years of marriage (Macionis, 2013, p. 525). The high divorce rate makes the U.S. among the countries with high divorce rates as it is the fourth highest among these countries. Every action is influenced by some factors as so is divorce. Below is an analysis of different causes that have led to the high divorce rate in the U.S.

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Stressful Marriages

Married people require to handle their career lives, their relationships as well as be responsible parents. The different roles can be overwhelming for a married person who works away from home in most cases (Macionis, 2013, p. 525). They end up with minimal time and energy for their families which can make it hard to raise children. The stress to balance between marriage life, parenthood and work make some parents withdraw some roles such as loving and caring for their spouses and over time, they grow apart. In the end, the couple may opt for divorce.

Independent Women

Women have become more educated and are getting employed as much as men are. As a result, women have become financially independent and can support their lives event without the support of their spouses (Macionis, 2013, p. 525). In the past, women were more financially dependent on their husbands as their rate of labor participation was lower than today. Some found it hard to leave unhappy marriages due to the financial dependence, however, today, women find it easy to leave unhappy marriages as they are less financially dependent on their spouses.

Reduced Romantic Love

Marriage is based on romantic love based on society and marriages with less intimate connection are more likely to fail (Macionis, 2013, p. 525). People in such relationships end their marriages because they feel unappreciated and unloved. They end up seeking new lovers who will fulfill their intimacy needs.

Increased Individualism

Many people are individualists in marriages. They are more concerned with their personal success at their workplace and happiness than that of their children or spouses (Macionis, 2013, p. 525). In other occasions, some spouses focus on the things they lack rather than appreciate what they have. It can make a spouse feel that their presence and efforts are unappreciated and prefer to end the marriage.

Easy Divorce Processes

It has become easy for couples to file a divorce unlike in the past (Macionis, 2013, p. 525). In the past, couples had to prove that one of them is guilty of acts such as physical abuse or adultery to acquire a divorce permit from the court, however, today, all they need is to declare that their marriages have failed. Over 30 percent of American adults have raised concerns on the ease of divorce and as a result, some states have considered rewriting their marriage laws.


Divorce rates are rising over the years as 20 percent of marriages end up in divorces within five years. Some of the causes of the divorce rate in the U.S. include women been less dependent on men, fading intimacy among couples, increased individualism, easy divorce processes, and stressful marriages. Married couples should ensure they fulfill their duties as husband and wife to minimize the high rate of divorce in the society.


Macionis, J. J. (2013). Sociology. Boston, Pearson.

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