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The impact of a difficult year on divorce rates

On Behalf of | Feb 23, 2021 | Divorce |

The difficulties of 2020 seeped into many areas of life, and the realm of marriage saw its own set of challenges. As a result, indicators reveal that divorce rates increased during this unprecedented year. 

A look at a few factors shows why this likely occurred. 

Increased stress on relationships 

While it is not unusual for relationships to experience stress, exceptional factors have the ability to ramp up the stress level. A National Law Journal report identifies several factors that made 2020 a difficult year for marriages: 

  • More time for reflection 
  • Increased boredom 
  • Added financial concerns 
  • More conflict with household chores 
  • Decreased access to counseling services 

Couples forced to adapt to a changing environment suddenly had more time together to find areas of disagreement. Perhaps not surprisingly, young couples suffered the most, with about 20% of newlyweds seeking a divorce in early 2020 as opposed to 11% in early 2019. Some experts predict this trend will continue for the rest of 2020 and perhaps into 2021. 

A perfect storm for couples

A BBC article shows that the phenomenon of breakups in 2020 is likely a worldwide event. A number of statistics point to an increase in couples looking to end relationships. One group reports a significant increase in online searches seeking advice on how to end a relationship in 2020. Countries such as the UK, China and Sweden all show indications that interest in divorce is up in 2020. 

The likely cause of this trend points to increased time together for couples as the result of lockdowns and slowdowns. In many cases, experts agree, the exceptional factors of 2020 served as a catalyst for divorce or separation for many couples.