Is cohabitation before marriage linked to higher divorce rates?



Nowadays, this is how cohabitation occurs. A boy and girl start dating and spend a lot of time together. They sleep over at each other’s house most of the time.

Little by little, they start dropping things off at each the other person’s place, and then they realize, ‘why should I pay rent when I spend half of my time at your place? Half of my things are already in his house.’

They decide to move in and live together, like a married couple without being married.

30 years ago, this was unheard of, and couples who lived together before marriage were seen as living in sin. But the statistics have changed now.

Over 70% of women have cohabited together with men and two-thirds of married couples lived together before marriage.

Why has it become a thing? Issues surrounding premarital sex are no longer taboo-ed, the availability of different birth control methods and the fact that many young people are living alone.

Also, most young people have the notion that they should marry only if they have lived together for a while to see if they could get along – it is almost like a test drive.

According to Meg Ryan, a doctor of psychology, men want to move in with their girlfriends because of sex, while women want to move in with their boyfriends because they want to be around love and affection.

However, different research shows that couples who cohabit are less satisfied with their marriages and more likely to divorce than couples who do not.

The Journal of Marriage and Family published a study in 2018 and the result of their study was; “Couples who lived together before marriage had a lower divorce rate in their first year of marriage, but had a higher divorce rate after five years.

Even though some sociologists argue that the effect of cohabitation is minimal.

The much better option is cohabitation after engagement not before – because there is already a clear intention to get married.

As the saying goes, why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free? Plus, irritation and familiarity can easily set in before engagement.

The truth is marriage is a risk, even though, you should talk with your partner and observe them, you cannot simulate a marriage before you get married – because marriages aren’t even perfect.

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