First thing I want to say is, this is an opinion and the stats don’t mean the wife was at fault. The goal is to see stats and know why men divorce versus reasons women divorce. If a woman or man is in a marriage and recognizes these things happening, they may be able to identify that the marriage may be on the way out the door. Some may want it that way, but my intention is to help and is more from the male perspective.
A study by the American Sociological Association determined that 70% of divorces are initiated by women. If they are college educated it is even higher. So I want to present what the stats say and then what reality says. One reason it may be higher for women is the perception there may be a more favorable outcome in court.
Different law firms list these 3 primary reasons for divorce by women:
- Women are more likely to feel held back by the marriage.
- Women often take on more of the emotional burden.
- Women no longer tolerate consistent unacceptable behavior.
Other contributing factors related to addiction, infidelity, and abuse.
What does this translate to in reality? Back in the day, women use to have certain responsibilities and even enjoyed staying at home to raise the children. Independence wasn’t seen as a big thing. The man was going to make more money and it was cheaper to take care of the kids and raise them yourself. This isn’t valued as much anymore as independence, and a woman following her dreams. Also, to live the life and build the dream both sides want, both women and men have to work .
Women still are expected to do the bulk of housework and raise the kids. This is so much that if the husband doesn’t recgonize it, his wife may burn out and put him on the back burner. He may feel unappreciated and useless. If there isn’t much sex, a man may become frustrated, and society tends to view that frustration as an acceptable response. This often begins the fire that eventually destroys the marriage. It’s not necessarily anyone’s fault. It’s a lack of adjusting to the situation and the times.
1. Lack of Appreciation/Respect
Men often want to feel useful and want to hear words that encourage and show us we are appreciated to feel loved. I wrote about this in, “A Man’s #1 Love Language.” Words of affirmation. It is strongly connected to what men feel about respect. This also leads to #2.
When both have jobs, they are working with other people and are at work more than at home. This can sometimes set up a situation for the #1 reason couples get divorced, which is caused by the root of other problems; Infidelity. Again, it is important to realize that both partners working doesn’t create the infidelity, but if there are other problems in the marriage, an affair is sometimes seen as the easy way out.
This is normally an automatic reason for men to divorce. Some men can forgive infidelity, but it is difficult and takes a lot of effort. I put this at #2 because although there are stats that show women cheat as much as men, I still believe that men cheat more and it’s the main reason women file for divorce over the other things.
The reasons listed for women to divorce, normally are because they are overwhelmed. From the husbands perspective, he doesn’t feel appreciated, and he may not want to divorce, but he may look for someone else to satisfy him emotionally and physically. Again, not the fault of the woman, but a failure of both to adjust to the times and to the situation.
3. Lack of Affection
All of these reasons are strongly connected. If a man is not receiving sex, appreciation or affection then he may feel neglected. The man may justify cheating as the only way to fix the problem he has with lack of intimacy. The man won’t realize that maybe the woman is burnt out from all the things she does.
Let me define more the times and situation. We can’t have the mentality that a woman should work, clean the house, take care of the kids, and still fulfill all of the man’s attention for sex, pleasure and words of affirmation. Both partners need to talk about and find a way through these issues that works for both. In these times, men need to adjust, so that the women aren’t burnt out. Maybe this means we have to let go of some sports, and hobbies and do some housework. We may have to cook, clean and take care of the kids, while the wife rest, so the workload is more even. Then she can have some energy for you both to please each other.
4. Lack of Commitment
Normally you would see money on this list of 4 and that could be a strong factor that causes a lot of stress in the marriage, but for men, lack of commitment could be interpreted as, not working for the common goals or lack of effort. It is still in men to have a goal in mind, and if that becomes unsupported or even trumped by a “Me first, my dream attitude”, then it will eventually be a reason for a man to divorce.
In marriage, you should prioritize the main goals set together first. Then someone has to be humble and support the other persons ideas with keeping money in mind, as normally money and time will be major factors. A lot of times, the wives are involved with the husbands success. We must not be selfish and should also support their goals and dreams.
Marriage in todays day and age, we must come to the agreement of what the main goals are. What vision do you have for raising the children, retirement, living within your means without allowing spending to get out of control. Who has the better head with controlling the spending? What vacations do you agree on and what are you willing to sacrifice together? Once the other person has a dream without the other persons support or input, you will start having issues and even begin to grow apart. Which leads to #5.
5. Lack of Communication
Everyone knows without lack of communication, men and women easily get on the wrong page. Even thinking things about each other that aren’t true because, they don’t truly understand the other sex. Without communication, you can’t set goals or talk about problems before they become arguments. How can you be friends when you don’t talk? A man will divorce for a lack of communication. There isn’t many things worst then not being able to say what’s on your mind and it’s an argument. Or if he just wants to talk about frustrations at work or even about the things he likes to chat about, and the wife is disconnected. A man will desire to have communication that is productive, intellectual, sometimes entertaining and some just like to hear their own voice.
This is more about being able to talk about money, bills or even topics. One of the reasons I divorced was I felt I outgrew my ex. She didn’t want to talk about bills, because she would say I was all about money. She didn’t want to go to church or talk about it. I went by myself. She didn’t want to talk about the future. My ex had other issues that I won’t talk about, but she didn’t want to get help or to talk about it. The reason communication is on this list is because, it is a root of the other issues and causes couples to grow apart.
On the man’s part, communication shouldn’t only be about bills, business, sports, politics, and plans. We should also open our ears to listen to them, and believe it or not, we should engage and start the communication too. Making the effort goes a long way. Never let each other get too much in your own worlds, because you will make that your focus and in marriage, you signed up for 2 worlds coming together. You don’t change completely, but you should be willing to adjust to the other person.
Other reasons men divorce: Loss of attraction, bad money habits, maturity issues.
I hope this helps someone.
Resources: ifstudies.org (Demographics of Infidelity in America by Wendy Wang)
This post was previously published on medium.com.
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