Spouses in South Carolina file for divorce for many different reasons, from infidelity and financial problems in the marriage to communication problems and growing apart over time.
But is one spouse more likely to actually take the step of filing for divorce than the other?
According to some researchers and commentators, women are more likely than men to file for divorce, and there are a handful of reasons that this may be true. Indeed, a study conducted by the American Sociological Association in 2015 determined that women in marriages initiate divorces in nearly 70 percent of all divorce filings, and the rate goes up to 90 percent for college-educated women who are ending marriages.
Are women more likely to file for divorce? And what explains these statistics? The following are just some of the reasons that women may be more likely to initiate divorce proceedings than men, according to an article in Divorce Mag.
Socialized Focus on Mental Health and Self-Care
Women are frequently socialized to focus on mental health and self-care in ways that men are not. Or, at the very least, social norms suggest that it is acceptable for women to focus on mental health and self-care while men do not often feel the same way. Accordingly, when women feel that a marriage is negatively affecting mental health, and that self-care requires making a decision to end the marriage, a woman may be more likely to file for divorce.
Shifting Social Norms and Focus on Relationship Quality
Traditionally, social norms kept women in unhappy marriages and, in some cases, abusive marriages. Over time, those social norms have shifted toward a focus on equality among men and women, and egalitarian marriages. Given that the social norms have shifted, many women feel more empowered to focus on relationship quality and to file for divorce when the relationship quality is poor.
Sensitivity to Relationship Problems
Some studies suggest that women have greater sensitivity to relationship problems, and thus may recognize that it is time to move toward a divorce before the man in a heterosexual relationship does.
Fewer Fears About Losing Out Financially in a Divorce
Men, more than women, may consider divorce but decide against filing out of fear about losing financially in a divorce. Despite the fact that more women work in professional roles and that many marriages have two full-time working spouses, men still tend to earn more than women and to be the primary wage earners as a result of the gender pay gap. As such, the husband in a heterosexual relationship may not be the one who files for divorce out of concerns about the division of assets.
Willingness to Seek Advice and Counsel
Commentators suggest that women, more than men, are willing to seek the advice of friends and family concerning relationship problems, and to entrust a lawyer with sensitive family information. Accordingly, women may be more likely to receive advice that encourages them to file for divorce.
Learn More from a South Carolina Divorce Lawyer
If you are considering the possibility of filing for divorce and want more information, an experienced Charleston divorce attorney at our firm can begin working with you today. Contact The Peck Law Firm to learn more about the services we provide to clients in South Carolina.