Why Do People Get Divorced?

Divorce has become a common practice to end marriages not only in the US, but in other countries around the world. However, the reasons for why people get divorced are generally more complex than the no-fault divorce explanation. Irreconcilable differences, as is often the reason given for the divorce, cover a large variety of things. Issues like a midlife crisis, workaholism, and financial problems, among others, are all things that may be covered under the title of “irreconcilable differences” in a no-fault divorce.

While no-fault divorce occurs at a higher rate in states that do not have the option to file for fault divorces, fault divorces offer a much clearer explanation for why the people want to get divorced. One spouse is claimed to be “at fault” for causing the breakdown of the marriage. For example, adultery or infidelity may be the reason given to end the marriage in states that allow petitions for fault divorces. In cases like these, sometimes even after counseling, the injured spouse is unable to forgive the infidelity that occurred, and may want to file for divorce.

But infidelity is not the only reason people have for getting divorced, depending on the laws of their state. Some states allow for addiction or domestic violence to be options to end the marriage as well. For example, if one spouse has an addiction that has created financial trouble for the marriage, the addiction may be grounds for divorce depending on whether the state has allows it as a reason in fault divorce cases. Another fault divorce option that is available in some states is abandonment. If one spouse abandons the couple’s home for a certain period of time, dictated by the relevant law in that state,  and does so without due cause such as business travel, the abandoned spouse may be able to file for a fault divorce on those grounds.

However, returning to the no fault divorce cases, while the legal reason given may be irreconcilable differences, the actual reason why the couple wants to get divorced may have more to do with things like emotions, commitment, or finances. Some couples will get divorced because they feel that there is no emotional or romantic connection between them any longer, and they want to pursue that kind of connection outside the marriage. If one spouse or both are more committed to their careers than to their spouses, they may consider getting a divorce because they feel they cannot provide the emotional support required to continue the marriage. Another reason for divorce that is becoming increasingly common is financial worries; if one spouse has mismanaged the couple’s money, or has accrued a large amount of debt through irresponsibility or addiction, it may be cause for the other spouse to desire a divorce.

Many people consider divorce the only option when they are having marital problems or are questioning their commitment or their partner’s commitment to the marriage. However, some marriages can be saved through marriage counseling or therapy if both spouses are willing to participate whole-heartedly in it. If both spouses are not committed to working on the marriage, improving their relationship, and resolving any other issues that have affected the marriage negatively, this counseling may not be effective in preventing divorce.