The Divorce Rate is 50% … Or is It?

Fran Holinda hosts Make Shift Happen with guest Michael Heath
February 10, 2017
Interview on Let’s Talk Divorce!
April 26, 2020

Is the divorce rate in the US 50%? Well, it depends on who you speak with and how the calculating is done. The good news is that most of those who are in the science of social trends believe the rate is coming down.  Before going any further here are some statistics from the US Bureau which are a bit sobering:

  • 40 to 50 percent of marriages end in divorce
  • A divorce happens every 36 seconds
  • 2400 divorces occur every day
  • There are 16,800 divorces every week
  • 876,000 divorces are recorded each year
  • The average length of a marriage ending in divorce is 8 eight years


According to Data from the National Survey of Family Growth marriages occurring in the 1980’s had a 65% chance of lasting 15 years or more. In the 1990’s the rate climbed to 75%. What could cause an upward trend toward the good? A likely reason is that people are postponing the trip to the alter. The Pew Research Center provides statistics showing that the average age of people marrying in the 1960’s was 22 for men and 21 for women. In 2011 the ages rose to 28 for men and 27 for women. It is said that with age comes wisdom. It makes sense that couples who do not rush into matrimony, but instead think things out over a longer time, give themselves a better chance of making the right decision. Also, people who have been out in the workforce for several years are almost always better off financially. Another contributor to the delays in today’s marriages is society’s acceptance of women bearing children later in life.

There appears to be advantages in waiting to take the walk down the aisle. Many people who measure divorce information have concluded that the current divorce rate is now closer to 40%. And compared to the old numbers, that figure should be looked upon as a success.

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