Musings on cohabitation

I ran across an article in the Journal of Family Psychology indicating that couples who live together before  marriage  are more likely to get divorced than couples who don’t move in together.  At first glance I thought that this makes sense since people who share space are more likely to encounter conflict in working out day to day compromises and that ‘familiarity may breed contempt’ in the words of the master. However the study concludes that a major reason for this fact is that living together often leads to marriage for all the wrong reasons. In other words, people slide into marriage in part because they are already living together.  Thus it is perceived to be more difficult to stop cohabitating – which has all the emotional pain of a divorce- than to just go ahead and plunge into marriage.  When I think of my experience working with couples I have encountered many who tell me that they had to stop living together in order to make the decision to get married….that they suspected that they were in fact “sliding into marriage”.With nearly 70% of couples cohabitating before marriage, there is certainly a rich environment for further research!
This entry was posted in Bookmark the permalink.