A recent study has proved that the traditional breadwinner husband/homemaker wife dichotomy increases the chances of divorce.
A novel study shows that pecuniary factors such as a couple’s total pool of resources and a wife’s ability to get by after a divorce are not signs of a stable marriage. Rather it is the division of labor – domestic and outer world – that determines the risks of a divorce. This comes as quite a shock.
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Finance hardly has anything to do with it. The study went into a quest regarding 6300 male-female couples. Both spouses ranged between 18 and 55 years of age.
The division of labor, total pool of resources available and wive’s financial condition after divorce all had an impact on buffering the marriage. Couples that wed in 1974 were compared to couples that got wed in 1975.
The factors were tallied regarding these couples. What the researchers found was that in both samples, the financial conditions did not contribute towards divorce status among the couples. Division of labor did have an effect yet there were variations in this factor.
For couples that wed before 1975, the more the wife engaged in domestic housework, the less likely were the chances of divorce. However, for more recent couples, such was hardly the case.
In their case, the men folk were expected to participate in the housework. Housewives still contribute a whopping 70% towards household duties. Yet the latest results show that the male folk are participating in the household duties too.
It is not just a one-sided game. Such a symbiosis is not only expected by the wives but lauded by them as well. For those couples that got married after 1974, neither the wive’s full-time employment nor her sharing the household duties were linked with any risk of divorce. Those males who had a part-time job were more likely to get divorced in the end.
For those couples you find today, the wives have every right to join the workforce and contribute to the household duties too. This increases the stability of the marriage.
The gender revolt and the feminist agenda have both seen to it that women have more of a say in life. At least it is a far cry from the erstwhile days of drudgery and boredom for women.
Now they have more choices. Sisters are indeed doing it for themselves. It is in fact the husbands that are on the receiving end nowadays especially if they do not contribute to the family’s needs.
Marriage is a complex arrangement and it is not as simple as a breadwinner husband and a homemaker wife. Things have advanced a lot since the so-called good old days.
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Titled, “Money, Work, and Marital Stability: Assessing Change in the Gendered Determinants of Divorce,” the study appears in the August issue of the American Sociological Review.