Our Allegheny County divorce lawyers have heard it all when it comes to myths about things that impact the longevity of a marriage. For example: You’re twice as likely to get divorced if your parents get divorced. Or, if only one partner is a smoker, you’re 75% more likely to divorce than smokers who are married to fellow smokers. Or, if you live in a red state, you’re 27% more likely to get divorced than if you live in a blue state. All jokes aside, whether these “divorce predictors” are based on correlation or causation is hard to say. But today our PA divorce lawyers learned of a new “divorce predictor” borne out of a recent Ohio State University study – the more siblings someone has growing up as a child, the less likely they are to get divorced when they grow up.
Further reading into the study which utilizes data from a General Social Survey reveals that, in terms of divorce, having no siblings or having just one or two doesn’t make much of a difference. Based on the data, the significant different is felt when you compare children from large families to those with only one child. In fact, the researchers calculated that after two siblings, the likelihood of divorce drops by two percentage points for each additional brother or sister a person has. According to experts, having more siblings means more experience dealing with others and resolving conflicts, which seems to be helpful in dealing with a marriage as an adult. Although the Ohio State University study was based on a wealth of raw sociological data, including interviews with 57,000 adults across the United States, every relationship is different and there are countless factors that can contribute to the end of a marriage. Though an interesting proposition, our PA family lawyers think the jury is still out on this divorce predictor.
So what does this all mean for people with conflicting predictors? For example, the Gosling siblings of Jon and Kate plus 8 – are they more likely to experience long-term wedded bliss because they come from a large brood, or less likely to be able to keep it all together because their parents’ marriage ended in divorce?