Wafting down the aisle looking fabulous in a white frock or striding along in a macho morning suit may seem to bear no relevance to getting divorced but sadly, it no longer guarantees a lifetime's commitment to marriage either.
Marriage breakdown and divorce
Since the 1950s the number of people choosing to get married has dropped by almost fifty per cent but the rate of marriage breakdown and the numbers of men and women looking to get a divorce has risen six fold.
UK society has changed radically since the end of the Second World War and continues to do so and the effect of family breakdown and divorce upon society is more marked now than at any other point in our history. Would you like to speak to a local expert Divorce solicitor?
The pill and its effect on marriage and divorce
The introduction of the contraceptive pill in the nineteen sixties gave women, for the first time, real control over their fertility and subsequently the ability to attain financial independence. This meant that they no longer needed to marry for security in the way that women of earlier generations had done.
There are five simple reasons for divorce which allow ample scope for invention. That's the sad truth. The majority of divorces rely upon 'unreasonable behaviour' as the reason for divorce. This does not have to be proved and quite trivial problems can be cited as 'unreasonable behaviour'. The social stigma that once came with being divorced has also been removed and the number of second marriages taking place has almost doubled in the last fifty years.
Co-habitation, marriage and divorce
Add to that the steady increase in couples choosing to live together rather than wishing to formalise their relationship with a wedding and it is not difficult to see why the popularity of marriage has fallen so dramatically since a peak in 1970 although the proportion of married couples getting divorced has risen darmatically.
Who can get a divorce?
Anyone who is married can get divorced. For every ten marriages there are four divorces. For every ten re-marriages there are seven divorces. That’s a lot of divorces. There are approximately one hundred and sixty thousand couples looking for reasons for getting divorced a year in the UK every year and seventy per cent of petitions for divorce are initiated by women. Before a man and a woman can get divorced they have to be married for at least one year. In order for a court to grant a divorce irretrievable breakdown of the marriage has to be demonstrated by the petitioner (the person who is seeking a divorce).
Relate is the largest provider of relationship counselling in the UK. For anyone experiencing problems in their marriage, help is available not far away either by telephone or at a Relate centre.
For help with divorce and separation Lawpack provide a very useful Self Help Kit.