“I want to be married by the time I’m 30” used to be a common phrase uttered by twenty-somethings. Turns out, it’s not such a bad goal to have after all, at least according to new analysis. Data collected by the National Survey of Family Growth found that people who marry past the age of 32 increase their odds of getting a divorce by 5 percent each year.
Plenty of experts say that people who wait longer to get married, who get more education and life experience and time on the job and opportunities to play and travel and save money, are more likely to have happy marriages. A new examination of recent data, however, shows that people who get hitched after their early 30s are more likely to divorce than the adults who marry in their late 20s.
The Marrying Kind: Does Age Really Matter?
Teens who marry face a high risk of divorce – it seems like this statistic is unlikely to ever change. Lack of maturity, coping skills, and social support – and often the reason for the marriage in the first place, the presence of an unexpected child – can all prevent a marriage from working for the long haul. But over the last 20 years, the trend is for 30-something marriages to incur a higher divorce rate. No matter the social or demographic differences, the pattern remains: For almost everyone surveyed, the late 20s seem to be the best time to get hitched.
Nicholas Wolfinger, a sociologist at the University of Utah, explained his look at this data on the Institute for Family Studies blog and pointed out that maybe the failure of marriages occurs because of “selection effect.” People have waited too long to get married and their pool of good partners once they are ready to marry has dwindled significantly. Perhaps they are, in general, misanthropic people who aren’t easy to live with let alone be married to forever. There could be children involved from other relationships, and former partners in the picture who complicate the possibility of a happy marriage for someone and their new love. If you fit into one of these categories, your marriage isn’t necessarily doomed, but the chances of your union surviving are definitely lower, so research says.
Age Is Just a Number
In 2011, the median age for marriage was 29 years for men and 27 years old for women, the highest it has been in decades for men and the highest ever for women. A poor economy could be a contributing factor – if you can’t afford the engagement ring and the wedding, that doesn’t bode well for a flush union. So people wait until they can afford it which, more often than not, happens in their late 20s.
The thing to remember is that the U.S. divorce rate continues to drop from its 1970s peak. So you’ve still got a shot at making it work. And statistics are just numbers. Marriage takes work, dedication, trust, support, and a determination to honor your partnership. If these elements are missing and you are indeed headed for a Michigan divorce, contact Femminineo Attorneys in Mt. Clemens, MI, to schedule your no-cost initial interview today.