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These Are the Times of Year You're Most Likely to Get Divorced

By Kathryn Lindsay
Aug 23, 2019
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If things are feeling a little tense right now, it's not just because everyone is fighting over air conditioning. According to researchers at the University of Washington, August is one of two months during which couples are more likely to get divorced. Associate sociology professor Julie Brines and doctoral candidate Brian Serafini observed a spike in divorce filings in the months of August and March between the years of 2001 and 2015, causing them to believe that divorce can be motivated by "domestic ritual."

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Brines and Serafini presented their work at the 111th Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association. While they were originally studying effects of the recession in the state of Washington, they noticed a pattern in divorce filings that suggests married couples are more likely to call it quits after the two major holiday seasons: winter and summer. Brines believes this is because the period during the holidays is considered an inappropriate time to divorce, since the holiday season and summer months are traditionally focused on family.

"People tend to face the holidays with rising expectations, despite what disappointments they might have
had in years past," Brines explained. "They represent periods in the year when there's the anticipation or the
opportunity for a new beginning, a new start, something different, a transition into a new period of life. It's
like an optimism cycle, in a sense.

However, the researchers hypothesize that if the holidays don't live up to expectations, or just create added stress, that's when couples are pushed to make that difficult decision. March allows time after the holidays to get finances in order, and August means a majority of the unpleasantness is dealt with before the kids go off to school.

These findings inspired both Brines and Serafini to look at filing patterns in four other states, Ohio, Minnesota, Florida, and Arizona, and found that the pattern was more or less the same. While this is a somewhat depressing discovery, you can comfort yourself with the fact that August, at least, is almost over.






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Date: 11.12.2018, 00:43 / Views: 51491