Salt Lake City, UT- For the past few decades, the conventional wisdom has been that nearly fifty percent of marriages end in divorce and the rate is climbing. It’s an oft repeated statistic that many, from journalists to social scientists, have tried to dispel and yet the myth persists.

An in-depth New York Times piece published today is once again trying to emphasize the rosier picture of marriage and divorce by presenting statistics that show divorce rates in the U.S., and the world for that matter, are actually on the decline and that is largely due to the changing social status of women.

Here are some interesting findings from the New York Times piece:

  • A majority of marriages, 70 percent, that began in the 1990s have lasted 15 years or more.
  • The divorce rate peaked in the 1970s and have been on a steady decline since.
  • Couples married in the 2000s have the lowest divorce rate
  • If divorce rates continue on the current trajectory, two-thirds of marriages will not end in divorce.

So, why are divorce rates on going down?

Marriage therapist and social science professor for University of Minnesota, William Doherty explained to the Times that women are the primary reason behind declining divorce rates. Factors such as the education of a married couple, the age at which a couple marries and their socio-economic status all play a role in a long lasting marriage. But according to Doherty the changing social and economic status of women is driving divorce rates down.

“Two-thirds of divorces are initiated by women, so when you’re talking about changes in divorce rates, in many ways you’re talking about changes in women’s expectations,” Doherty told the Times.

Also leading to the decline in divorce is the fact that younger couples are marrying at a much later age, an important point we previously discussed on USA Attorneys and the Times noted in their report. A 2012 study from the Pew Research Center found that in the 25 to 42 age group, one in five adults have never been married. That’s a stark contrast to the 60s when only one ten people within the same age group have never been married.

While divorce rates are declining for the younger couples, the divorce rate among the greying set are on the rise. The divorce rate among baby boomers has increased fivefold since the 60s and continue to climb as older couples see divorce taboos of the past falling away.

We would all like to think that when we get married we chose the right partner and our marriages are going to last until we die. For some couples that is a reality, but there are still many marriages that can’t stand the test of time and couples need the expert advice of a divorce attorney when their marriage falls apart.

Many complicated issues arise when a couple divorces, chief among them is asset division and child custody. A couple can turn to one of our top-notch Salt Lake City divorce attorneys like Morgan E. Wilcox to help then resolve these issues with a little pain as possible.