Coronavirus and Divorce: Why the U.S. Divorce Rate Has Started to Spike

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In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, some people predicted another U.S. baby boom. 

Unfortunately, sheltering in place has had its drawbacks, as some couples have experienced more turbulence than marital bliss. The latest reports suggest there is actually a COVID divorce boom. 

Today, you will see why coronavirus and divorce are linked and just how much of an impact the virus is having on American families. 

Coronavirus and Divorce – Why the Spike? 

In March 2020, divorce rates in China started to rise. According to an interview conducted by Bloomberg News, some Chinese divorce attorneys say they have seen rates rise by 25%. 

Experts were concerned that what they saw in China was a foreshadowing of what would happen in the U.S. Reports spread on social media that people anticipated a coronavirus divorce boom once the pandemic was over. 

What they did not realize is that the divorce rate would begin to rise while couples were still living through the pandemic. And it is only expected to increase further once the pandemic is over. 

What is the link between divorce and coronavirus? Here are some causes of the COVID divorce boom. 

1. Amplification of Incompatibility

If you and your spouse had difficulty getting along before the pandemic, having to shelter in place might have made things worse. 

Differences of opinion on everything from political views and the coronavirus response to how to educate the kids at home and how you are both going to work from home can take their toll. 

Of course, this is besides all the “normal” disagreements that you and your spouse have already been dealing with before the pandemic.

2. Very Little Privacy or Personal Space

There is some truth in the phrase “absence makes the heart grow fonder.” Everyone needs their personal space, but the coronavirus has made getting that difficult. Your whole family – you, your spouse, your kids – is home all the time. Your house can start to seem claustrophobic and devoid of peace – the perfect storm for creating irritation and disharmony within the family. 

3. Zero Work-Life Balance

In the past few years, more people were advocating for better work-life balance. Americans put work ahead of everything, often to the detriment of their health. With the wellness movement of the past decade, more people were learning to leave work at the office and use their time at home for healthful, non-work activities, like spending quality time with the family and on self-care. 

Now, more people are working from home. They have turned their coffee tables and dining room tables into workspaces. They are trying to educate their children while participating in a Zoom conference call. 

Self-care has gone out of the window in many cases, while stress has increased. 

4. Domestic Violence

Intimate partner violence is on the rise in many places worldwide – and that includes the U.S. 

According to the journal Radiology, healthcare workers are seeing an increase in domestic violence cases, as well as the severity with which one partner attacks another. Hospitals have seen a rise in: 

  • Burns
  • Strangulation
  • Stabbings
  • Gunshot wounds

Researchers theorize that there is a two-fold reason for the increase. 

First, the opportunities for such violence have increased with families being in lockdown together. 

Second, everyone’s stress levels are on the rise, in part because there are so many unknowns with the virus. People do not know when their kids will go back to school, when they will get to go back to work, and when life will return to normal. Such uncertainty is dangerous for abusers and their victims as abusers need to feel in control. When they do not, they lash out against their partner. 

5. Pandemic Fatigue  

A phrase that has become all too common as of late is “pandemic fatigue.” No one will argue that 2020 has been a strenuous year. All the stresses already mentioned are bad enough. Now, add to that the strict social distancing regulations and mask mandates, and people are fed up. 

Change is not easy for anyone, and this year has been one of tremendous upheaval and changes to everyday life. The resulting strain can lead to marital tension. 

6. Financial Strain

As of October 11, 2020, another 898,000 people filed for unemployment. Upward of 35 million Americans could face eviction in the coming weeks. To say people are dealing with financial strain is putting it lightly. 

Money issues can lead to complications within a marriage during the best of times. During a pandemic, though, the stress of money problems can lead a couple to the edge, making divorce seem like the only sound option. 

Get Help Through the Difficulties of Marriage and Divorce 

Marriage is not easy. Besides a lot of effort, making a marriage work often requires assistance from those outside the marriage, including trusted friends or family members or a marriage counselor. 

Divorce is not easy either. If you and your partner have decided to part ways, you will likely experience some anxiety and stress over the situation. Having someone in your corner who understands the process of divorce thoroughly can give you peace of mind. 

If you have questions about divorce or concerns about the process and protecting yourself, the team at Divorce Lawyers for Men can help. The experienced divorce attorneys can guide you through the process, answer all your questions, and represent you should you decide to go through with the divorce. 

Does the COVID divorce boom have you considering divorce? Contact our office to schedule a consultation. We are happy to answer all your questions. 

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