Wedding season is around the corner, however with every new promise of “forever”, some other couple decides to put an end to their relationship. Avoid holidays, if you want to save your marriage. Although the idea that the divorce rate is increasing may be a myth, maybe it is high time that you took that into consideration since a new research has revealed that there may be some fact to some of the divorce patterns. This seasonal pattern of divorce may be motivated by a tendency for couples to put off filing for a divorce during times that are usually important to families. According to the University of Washington, divorce rates might be cresting twice a year- after winter and summer holidays. Unfortunately, even “summer love” is not being able to put an end to the break ups.
More divorces happen in March and August than in any other months is what the researchers have found. The research is considered to be the first to find proof of a seasonal pattern of marriage breakups. Family rituals around summer and winter holidays may be driving the trend, is what the researchers propose.
Associate sociology professor Julie Brines, PhD, and doctoral candidate Brian Serafini initially wanted to examine the impacts of the recession on marital stability, however, ended up in looking out for the seasonality in divorce rates. They were surprised to find a consistent pattern emerge, when they began analysing divorce filing in Washington State between the year 2001 and 2005.
During a press release, Brines said that the model seemed sturdy from year to year and across the countries. The spikes continued even after they considered for things like the housing market and unemployment which also had a tendency to follow the seasonal pattern.
The researchers also think that around the time of New Year and Christmas, the couples avoid filing for divorce. And also when the school is out for the summer. It is basically because these times are supposed to be divine to the families. They say that many of the couples find it socially unacceptable to file divorce during these particular periods. Also, some of the unhappy husbands and wives feel that they will be rejuvenated or find a heal to their troubled married life if they spend enjoyable holidays together or maybe a nice family vacation.
Brines opines that despite the frustrations they might have had in years past, people tend to face the holidays with high expectations. Brines said. Other than that, they tend to think it as an opportunity for a new start. However, holidays may not live up to those expectations which in turn can be so stressful and make them emotionally charged. For some of the relationships, these holidays might be the last straw but unfortunately, end up in a “broken promise” scenario.
Brines assumes that in order to ensure a lawyer, prepare finances in order, and also work on the guts to file the divorce, the couples need time. And hence the gap between New Year’s and first noted the spike in March.
She opines that the same thought may be implemented in the summer after a month or two of family vacation time. Although the commencement of the school year could speed up the timing for couples with kids and account for the second spike in August.
Another important point that she noted was that the suicidal rates tend to increase during the spring season. Experts assume that this is because of the longer days and increased activity which tend to uplift mood in people with depression sufficient for them to act on their suicidal thoughts. It is also possible that related factors could trigger fed up couples to take action, says Brines.
The researchers displayed their research as a working paper at the annual gathering of the American Sociological Association. They are now examining other states to see if their conclusions hold true in a larger specimen size. Florida and Arizona were among the states that were hit hardest by the real estate collapse, whereas Ohio had greater than average employment rates.
It will surely be fascinating to see if the findings hold up as researchers expand their study to more states. However, as of now, this is a rather intriguing look into what could be a pattern in separation and maybe even breakups in general.