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Divorce Can be Contagious Among Friends

Carlsbad, CA – Looking for an indicator of whether you’re going to get divorced? Look at whether your friends are doing it.

A study conducted by researchers at the University of California at San Diego and two other universities looked at 30 years of data and found that you’re 75 percent more likely for your marriage to end in divorce if you have a friend who is divorced, according to the Chicago Tribune. If a friend of a friend is divorced, your odds of following suit increase 33 percent.

Divorce Can be Contagious CarlsbadAmong Friends
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This phenomenon is referred to in some circles as “domino divorce.” A study conducted by Cooperative Legal Services in the United Kingdom found that “almost one in four men who have divorced or split up with their partner admitted their decision was swayed by friends who had done the same, according to a Metro article. “One in seven women were also influenced by newly single acquaintances. And a further one in ten confessed they just wanted the same happiness as their unencumbered friends.”“Anatomy of Love” author Helen Fisher says the domino effect is created when seeing a close friend go through a divorce opens the person’s eyes to the possibilities, the Tribune article stated.

It is possible that a friend’s divorce can make you look at the weak spots in your own marriage, and perhaps consider divorce as a means of escaping the trouble. Many people fear divorce even though they’re unhappy in their marriage because they fear that they won’t be able to make it on their own if they become single. But seeing a friend go through divorce and be able to provide from themselves can offer hope.

Plus, people can feel envious when they see their newly single friends back on the town, enjoying nightlife and dating. That grass on the other side can look mighty green, after all.

As a friend goes through the divorce and confides in you all the faults in the marriage that brought them to this point, it is common to seek common ground. Perhaps you share your marital troubles, too. Before you know it, maybe you’re thinking about divorce.

Having friends who are going through divorce doesn’t mean that you also have to become suddenly single. You can use a friend’s circumstance to communicate with your spouse and discuss the problem areas in your marriage. Seek ways to resolve those issues through counseling or other constructive means. Discuss what went wrong in your friend’s marriage and voice your desire to not go down that same road.

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Family Attorney John N. Griffith, CFLS

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