Oxytocin Levels and Other Strange Divorce Predictors

Listen up, ladies. A new study shows that your oxytocin levels may influence your marriage’s success.

a broken red heart with two golden rings on it

This is the most recent in a long list of divorce predictors that you might find downright unusual.

This new study presented in January at the Society for Personality and Social Psychology annual meeting in San Diego links a woman’s oxytocin levels to the chances she’ll get divorced shortly after giving birth, according to a Medical Daily article.

Oxytocin is instrumental in maternal bonding, lactation, social bonding, sexual pleasure and potentially marital bonds, according to the American Psychological Association.

The study included 341 pregnant women. Their oxytocin levels were tested during their first trimester of pregnancy, during their third trimester, and seven to nine weeks after they gave birth.

Researchers followed up with 188 of the study participants two and a half years later to check the status of their marriages. They found that the women with lower oxytocin levels while they were pregnant and after their babies were born were more likely be separated from their partners by the time their babies reached toddler status, according to a Women’s Health article.

Conversely, the odds of a marriage lasting increased about sevenfold for every unit increase in oxytocin during the first trimester, the researchers discovered. Each unit increase of oxytocin after they gave birth increased those odds by nearly nine times, the Medical Daily article stated.

Although there is science behind this divorce predictor, several other predictors simply have statistics to prove their point.

Let’s talk “online affairs.” One third of divorces are caused by online affairs, according to a Refinery 29 article. Part of the problem could be that 54 percent of men don’t believe that having an online affair is considered adultery.

We all know the saying, “Go big or go home,” but when it comes to marriage, “going big” increases your odds of going to divorce court. Emory University economics professors Andrew Francis and Hugo Mialon conducted a study in 2014 that found couples that spent more than $20,000 on their wedding were more than three times as likely to divorce as couples that spent $5,000-$10,000.

Lack of a college education is another predictor that may seem strange, but a comparison of American women who married in 1975 to 1979 with those who married in 1990 to 1994 found that college-educated women are less than half as likely to get a divorce as women with a high school degree or less, according to an article on the U.S. National Library of Medicine website.

Commuting 45 minutes or more to work could spell doom for a marriage, according to a 2013 study published in the British journal Urban Studies. It found that couples where one partner had a lengthy commute were 40 percent more likely to split up.

Regardless of your reason for divorce, it’s a good idea to consult an attorney who specializes in family law as you begin the process. Call our office today for a complimentary consultation if you would like to learn more about our services.