Researchers have done many, many studies on the relationship between love and money. Not surprisingly, they have found that financial issues are a great source of stress in marriages and one of the leading factors in divorce. Here are three key things that studies have revealed about finances and divorce.
1. Money Is the Leading Cause of Stress in Relationships
A survey done by SunTrust Bank revealed that money was the leading cause of stress in 35 percent of relationships. That stress is pervasive. In a separate study, The American Psychological Association found almost 75 percent of Americans are experiencing financial stress at least some of the time, and nearly 25 percent are feeling extreme financial stress. So, if you and your partner are arguing over money, know you’re not alone.
2. When Wives Earn More than Husbands, Divorce Is More Likely
It’s increasingly common for wives to earn more than their husbands. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the wife earns more than the husband in 38 percent of marriages.
While the gender of the household’s primary breadwinner is changing, studies indicate that couples may be up against social and cultural forces that are slower to change. Some research suggests that couples are at higher risk of divorcing when the male partner earns less than the female partner. A study done by Harvard professor Alexandra Killewald reports that the risk of divorce is nearly 33% higher when a husband isn’t working full-time.
There could be many reasons for this, including the effort it takes a woman to shatter the glass ceiling, marital dynamics and social pressure. For example, a separate study done by the Pew Research Center found that about 40 percent of Americans believe it’s extremely important for a father to provide income for his children, but just 25 percent said the same of mothers.
3. Arguing About Money Is the Number One Predictor of Divorce
A 2018 study of 4500 couples published in the journal Family Relationships found that financial disagreements predicted divorce more strongly than any other common sources of disagreement, like how much time a couple spends together or how the household tasks are divided. The authors concluded that arguing about money–especially early in the relationship–could be the number one predictor of divorce.
Of course, arguing about money does not always mean you’ll divorce. But if you and your partner are involved in a financial dispute and you are considering a divorce, working with the right lawyer is the best way to protect your interests. Start by calling the Arlington office of the Schneider Law Firm, P.C., at 817-799-7125. Consultations are confidential.
MarketWatch – When Wives Earn More Than Their Husbands, Marriage is Less Likely to Last
Money, Work and Marital Stability Study
CNBC: Money is the Leading Cause of Stress in Relationships
Family Relations: Examining the Relationship Between Financial Issues and Divorce