Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 4

1 Jesse Sulewski Professor Lago English 1100-41 5 November 2013 Economic Causes of Divorce Ill tell you when

youre older, they said. It is too complicated for you to understand. My parents were right; I did not understand why my aunt and uncle were getting a divorce. I was ten years old, double digits; I thought I knew everything. I thought that if one person enjoys the presence of another person, than those two people were in love, and they were to get married. On the same note, I thought to believe that couples often split up because they simply did not love their significant other person any longer. However being a young child, I never considered other factors towards divorce. I never thought of the economy and how it could potentially be the cause of my aunt and uncles separation. As the years go by, divorces are more and more common in marriages across the country. Sure, there are some cases where a marriage ends because the couple agrees that the love connection is no longer there. However more often than not, most relationships are torn apart for more complicated reasons. The economy in the United States plays a huge role in the rise of divorce rates today. Relationships are often built and destroyed by events that happen around the world. Any traumatic incident like war, or the death of an important leader figure, often affects the relationships of married couples. Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers present a graph in the writing, Marriage and Divorce: Changes and their Driving Forces. The graph illustrates the divorce rates between 1860 and 2005. According to the graph, in 1945 the divorce rates peaked. This same year, president Franklin D. Roosevelt died in office. The economy suffered from the

2 death of the president as well as many marriages. Also, the Vietnam War was ending in the 1970s causing the economy to suffer. A hurting economy can lead to job loss and can greatly affect relationships. The economy of the job market can be a deciding factor of a long-lasting relationship as well. Between the late 1960s and early 1970s the divorce rates were rising. The economy at this time was changing dramatically after the war. During this period, family life was potentially altered by many factors: the rise of the womens liberation movement; the sexual revolution; the Supreme Courts granting of marriage as a fundamental right under the U.S. Constitution and thus the abolition of laws restricting marriage between races; the elimination in many states of fault-based divorce; and a sharp rise in womens labor force participation (Stevenson and Wolfers 28). All of these changes in the economy can affect a relationship. For example, the rise in womens labor force participation allows more women to have jobs. Therefore, if the woman has a job, this means she is also making her own salary. Finally, if the woman has her own salary, she no longer feels the need to rely on a husband. In the past, it was very common for a female to get married strictly for the benefits of a hard-working husband. Divorce became more common as womens rights grew because the women began to rebel. Women were starting to recognize their own power, and decide that they can survived and make a living without the help of a husband. As the decades evolve, women are becoming more and more independent. Heterogeneous human capital, uncertainty, and the structure of plans: A market process approach to marriage and divorce is an article written by Steven Horwitz and Peter Lewin. This article explains two important dimensions of marriage: market-oriented human capability, and household-oriented human capability. Generally speaking, men were known to be better in the

3 market-oriented category. This means, men are typically in charge of having a job and making money for the family. Whereas, females are typically known for being more household-oriented. Females are often better with childcare and house cleaning, for example. With a male and a female that fall under these generic qualities, a healthy marriage is more likely to occur. The problem is: in todays society it is more common for women to be a part of the workforce. [T]he gains from marriage that are achieved by sector-specific (home or market) specialization have fallen (Horwitz and Lewin 7). In other words, the work between the husband and wife are not balanced. The relationship becomes more stressful when either the husband or wife is found doing more work. Also, the couple no longer relies on each other, which lowers the potential gains from marriage. Divorce is then more likely to take place because in the longer run, the cost of divorce is much cheaper when the gains from marriage begin to diminish.

The economy today is still currently suffering after the recession. Written in the article The fiscal cliff crisis and the real economic crisis in the United States, Dean Baker states, The economy is still down more than nine million jobs from its trend path, and the unemployment rate is more than three full percentage points above its pre-recession level (Baker 67). The rise in unemployment is affecting much more than just the adults without a job. Everyone is affected in some way by the economy. Besides the individual, this problem is also affecting relationships among married couple. Couples are divorcing because the economy is affecting the family income, which causes stress between the relationships. Not only is the married couple affected, but also the children. Watching parents fight all the time is never healthy for a childs development. Many children are mentally and emotionally affected due to a divorce.

4 If the economy does not recover soon, my future will be impacted as well. My mom is currently unemployed and money is getting tight for my family. I am concerned that my parents relationship will end due to finance issues. Also aside from marriage, the cost to get a college degree is extremely high. I will be paying thousands of dollars a year in order to pay back student loans. With a bad economy, it is extremely difficult to find a job right out of college. Therefore without a job, I will never be able to pay back the loans. Also, a well-paid job is nearly impossible to find without a college degree. If the economic crisis is not resolved it will be a lose-lose situation for everyone. It is up to the government to create a plan to fix the economy. If the economic issue is not addressed, it can only get worse; poverty will become a problem in the United States. Unfortunately, the economy has a domino effect. For example, a bad economy means a bad job market. A troubled job market results in unemployment. Then, unemployment causes difficulties in married couples, which eventually leads to divorce. Finally, divorced parents affect the childrens growth and potentially creates mental or emotion problems for the children later in life. I am eighteen years old now; I am a young adult. I asked my parents one more time for the real reason as to why my aunt and uncle got a divorce. My mom began to explain how the economy was a major factor in their decision. Of course it wasnt the only reason, but the economy was not the best when the couple divorced. My aunt lost her job, causing their family income to decrease dramatically. They started to fight about the bills and eventually the atmosphere became less and less safe for their children. As a result, they split up. The couple wanted what was best for their children and since the economy was so terrible, the best thing to do was file a divorce.