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Facts and statistics pages tend to be used primarily by activists and others looking for quick information on a given subject, and if that’s you, you’ve come to the right spot. But they can also help parents get a better idea about where their own situation falls on the spectrum. It can help you get an idea about how and why things go wrong for other people, which may provide insight pertaining to your own divorce. So for what it’s worth, here are some facts and statistics regarding divorce that may help parents understand their own circumstances a little better:

Facts About Divorce

Divorce fact #1: U.S. divorce rates are the highest in the Western world.

Divorce fact #2: At least half of the children in this country whose parents divorce are under the age of six when it happens. (Wallerstein, Lewis & Blakeslee, 2000, p. 160)

Divorce fact #3: Around two-thirds of all divorces, according to estimates, are initiated by wives. (Brinig & Allen, 2000; Luscombe, 2010)

Divorce fact #4: A wide range of factors show a correlation to the divorce rate, including frequency of sex, race, and religious commitment.

Divorce fact #5: Population studies conducted in 2004 and 2008 show that liberal-leaning “blue” states have lower rates of divorce than conservative voting “red” states. This is possibly because different attitudes lead people to wait longer before getting married. (NPR, 2010) According to other research by the Pew Forum, evangelicals are more likely to be divorced than Roman Catholics, Mormons, the Eastern Orthodox Muslims, Jews, Hindus, and atheists. (Miller, 2009)

Divorce fact #6: Although cohabitation before marriage has sometimes been linked to higher divorce rates, studies indicate that divorce-prone couples tend to first cohabit, and it’s not cohabitation by itself that is correlated with divorce. (Davis, 2010)

Divorce fact #7: Those with a higher education and who get married at a later age have lower divorce rates. Eighty-one percent of college graduates over 26 years of age who wed in the 1980s were still married 20 years later, compared to 65% of college graduates who married under 26, and 49% of high-school graduates who married under 26 in the same period. (Luscombe, 2010)

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