Does living together before marriage lead to divorce?

The debate on cohabitation has received mixed reactions in the society. Comparative assessment of its merits and demerits explores the overall effect on the future of marital relationships. The contemporary family structure and emerging trend on length of time spent on relationship before eventual divorce elicits discussion on cohabitation. The increasing number of people I a romantic relationship living together without official marriage declaration is coincidentally moving in the same direction with the scale of divorce rate. In that respect, it is worth to correlate cohabitation to divorce. However, there are evident facts to defend this assertion.

The contemporary socio-economic adjustments make cohabitation relatively easier in respect of meeting living costs together. In that respect, most young people readily move in together to share costs and explore their romantic imaginations. However, the underlying consequences of such an arrangement remain hidden to each partner. One of the factors that promote cohabitation is the social background of the partners which go a long way in influencing divorce probability if they get married. In most cases, people from socially imbalanced families with limited religious attachment, cultural conservation and general parental care tend to quit and live with their partners to realize their dreams in better social environment (Stanton 45). This means that level of aggression among cohabiting partners is always higher than those who marry without cohabiting. The effect of such aggression is heated arguments, difficulty in communication which translates to shaking marital relationship should there be one. Besides, living together for a long time before marriage reduces the tolerance factor which pushes the partners towards eventual divorce should there be marriage.

From the economic perspective, the switching cost tends to be difficult for cohabiting partners due to significant financial investment while settling down. From this perspective, partners would endure each other’s poor habits with increasing irreconcilable differences that fuels boredom in the marriage and eventual divorce. The gender agenda differences between the partners cohabiting are another reason for the high risk of divorce. In most cases the woman takes such unofficial living arrangement as a path to marriage and expects to see the responsible, sensitive and, mature man in her boyfriend. On the other hand, the male partner considers cohabitation as period of testing the viability of the marriage in future (Arnett 126). In that regard, men tend to lengthen the cohabitation period while avoiding commitment which silently sends discomfort to the female partner. It is obvious that such skewed viewpoint of the two partners living together in a relationship brews discontent and when the marriage is finally joined, there is high risk of behavior reoccurrence which leads to divorce.

The cohabitation period is always misinterpreted by the partners as it is taken as casual with limited commitment to each other in terms of difficulties that abound marriage. In that respect, there is always a problem of behavior-related transition from living together to marriage and the effect is possible divorce.

Critical evaluation of the trend in cohabitation and corresponding rate of divorce based on the discussed factors gives a conclusive assertion that living together before marriage lead to divorce.

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