The recession has been hard on many individuals, but a new study has concluded that the recession has been especially hard on marriages. According to the study, 29% of couples reported that financial stress has led to marital stress and a high risk of divorce during the economic downturn.
However, another third of the respondents in the study from the University of Virginia said that the tough economic times led them to work harder to preserve their marriage and avoid divorce. The study cited this as one of two “silver linings” to the Great Recession.
Among those who said they had worked harder on their marriages as a result of the recession, around half said they were in a “very happy marriage.”
The second “silver lining,” according to the study, was that of the couples who were considering divorce before the recession, 38% postponed the split because of financial hardship.
The findings of the study are consistent with some data that indicates divorce rates have fallen in the recession. For some, the recession has brought troubles that ended their marriage, for others, though, the recession has meant delaying plans to try to maintain two households.
Over a thousand married people were surveyed for the study. Couples without a college degree reported the most economic hardship.
Over a third of the respondents said that worries about paying their bills occupied them almost all the time or often. There were 12% who reported trouble paying the mortgage.
Nearly a third of respondents said they had been unemployed or had their hours reduced during the recession.
Respondents who reported the most financial strains also reported the highest risk of divorce.
A reputable California divorce attorney noted that only 7% of respondents reported that they were relatively unscathed by the recession.