Wednesday, December 03, 2008


Looks like S and I have only a 3% chance of getting divorced in the next five years. I suppose that's comforting. [link from NY Times, of course--you've probably seen it yourself; if so, and if it's germane, I assume you tried it!] [Libby, I'm thinking you're exactly in our demographic]

Edited to add: After reading the comments in the article, I went back and calculated for S: while 15% of people like me are divorced, and 3% will get divorced in next five years, 14% of people like him are divorced, and 2% will get divorced, which is strikingly similar, to the point of statistically the same, I would think, though it's interesting that he wasn't asked if he had children (which makes me wonder if children raise or lower chances for women--economically, I would think they lower, because of need to maintain them, but practically, they might raise, given how much conflict their maintenance can engender).

Edited again to add: Then again, if my parents had done this calculator in 1983, they probably would have had pretty low odds, as I'm guessing their only negative indicator would have been early marriage, which lots of education, children, and marital longevity would probably have overcome, for the most part.  They got divorced in 1984.  Which could be ascribed to the fact that 3% chance still means that 3 out of 100 WILL get divorced, but could also be ascribed to the historical phenomenon of 1970s and 80s post-feminism/sexual revolution mid-life divorces, which my generation seems to be trying to avoid, surely at least in part as a response to our parents.  And that's why I'm a literary/historical type, not an economist...

(S thinks this post is really hard to read. Sorry about that.) (Uh, he meant in terms of the writing, not the content, in case anyone was worried.)


Libby said...

I think I have an even lower risk:
People with similar backgrounds who are already divorced: 22% (Mark's is 14%)
People with similar backgrounds who will be divorced over the next five years: N/A (same for Mark)

What's the difference? We've been married 21 years, is that it?

Jane said...

For me - people with similar backgrounds who are already divorced: 24%. People with similar backgrounds who will be divorced over the next five years: 5%.

Wonder what that says knowing what we do about me!

landismom said...

Hmm. Mine was similar backgrounds--7%, likely in next five years--5%. Not sure what that means for us!