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Marriage and Divorce Essay

marriage and divorce essay

Example #1 – Marriage And Divorce In The Post Victorian

Marriage is a social structure. When couples get married they enter into a relationship that is societally recognized and to some degree societally regulated. Laws, customs, traditions, and cultural assumptions are intrinsically involved in defining the path that a marriage will take.

In the late 19th century many Americans had to come to terms in some way with the societal expectations of marriage, guided by the Victorian mores. But as the 20th century began these elements began to evolve. As personal expectations became more important societal expectations lost prevalence.

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The laws and regulations of the 1920s succeeded in making it more difficult to obtain a divorce. More conservative states in the East limited divorce to only two or three complaints, adultery or abandonment were the most common.

But this red tape did not slow down the rapidly accelerating rate of divorce in the 1920s. Especially in the more liberal West was divorce becoming a more usual case. The state of California and the state of New Jersey were the centers of May’s Great Expectations.

California was settled by Victorians, many of who were European immigrants who moved to California from the mid-West. Other Victorians were native-born white Protestant Americans from the middle class. These men and women believed that independence and self-denial would lead to progress. Most of these people were well to do merchants and professionals, who had economic autonomy. This Victorian culture encouraged domestic morality.

During this time there were clearly defined sex roles. The husband served as the sole provider and the wife took care of the home, children, and volunteer work at the church. With the high social standards set at this time divorce was a huge reputation killer. But divorce still did occur.

Cases against men of the time included: inability to provide for basic needs disruption of domestic life with vices and abuse or cruelty. Cases against women covered: inadequacy in motherhood, not fulfilling domestic responsibilities, and any use of vices.

What changes happened over the next forty years to cause an increase in the divorce rate? One might guess that women became more liberated or that the influx of immigrants may have caused competition for jobs. May proposed the idea that a revolution took place within society, a change that did not include all of the aspects of Victorianism. During this time there was an industrial revolution, a sexual revolution, and urbanization. All of these meant that new roles needed to be defined within the home and between the sexes.

In the workplace, corporations began to rise and ruin the opportunity for economic autonomy. No longer could have the pride and power of running his own business, he was now forced to work under someone and in most cases take a pay cut.

This also meant many women were almost forced into the workforce. Though many husbands didn’t want their wives to have to work many women were encouraged to go out and get a job. Some women saw this as a new opportunity, which meant more freedom, but many were very unhappy with this idea. This was an accepted claim for divorce in many of the cases in California at the beginning of the 20th century.

As the industry began to boom another wave affected the lives of the middle-class Americans: consumerism. With a newfound abundance of goods men and women became preoccupied with material goods. As families began to move out into the suburbs there was a great competition to keep up with the newest in goods.

Tension began to grow as men and women became unhappy when they couldn’t afford all of the goods they expected. “After 1900, the communal values of sacrifice, volunteerism, and virtuous domesticity were seriously shaken by the rise of urban culture, which brought altered sex roles and post-Victorian expectations of marriage and family life” (May 49).

Marriage began to grow into something new. Women began to be much more conscious of the importance of their choice in a husband. This idea seemed to give women a sense of power, the power to have a choice in their marriage, sex, and domestic life. Many women had the goal of finding or catching the perfect man. These women were disappointed when they realized they couldn’t have everything that they saw in Hollywood movies. This realization ended many marriages of the time in divorce.

The underlying concept in all of these changes was a newfound desire for personal fulfillment. Home became a place to satisfy personal desires, and for the first time, private life became cut off from public concerns. Among these desires was the ultimate double standard. Women wanted their men to support their families but also to be their fun-loving pal. Men wanted excitement and purity. This reflected the desire for the new vitality and the old morality to co-exist within the home.

During this time period, men were granted a divorce for women who became too independent and seemed to enjoy their freedom too much, meaning they were no longer taking care of their duties at home. Other cases centered on women who were unsatisfied with the lifestyle that their husband was providing for them. Some of these cases were granted to the men and others to the women.

Women often desired a divorce from a husband who tried to force them to go to work. These women felt that their husband was unwilling to simply provide for his family, most of these women were granted the divorces.

Elaine Tyler May did a great job of backing up all of these ideas with many cases from California and a few from New Jersey. This may assume that all California and New Jersey accurately represented America. Perhaps May should have instead sub-titled her book Marriage & Divorce in Post-Victorian California. I am sure that most of these same trends were spread all over the nation but there may have been other causes that May did not touch on.


Example #2


Marriage is a bond of love between a man and a woman. Traditional marriage today is not the same as 100 years ago due to the fact that life spans have changed and women are not economically dependent on their husbands. However, traditional marriage in today’s society is incapable of binding a couple in a lifetime of love and equality. This will be proved by the change in economic value, divorce, and love.

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The economic value between men and women has changed drastically. Over the years females are proving they are smarter and more capable than males of doing anything they want and better. “50 years ago the majority of women were dependent on their husbands to work and support them.” Women were not considered to be part of the human race.

They were basically only used to reproduce babies, do the housekeeping, and take care of their husbands. Male-dominance was the main issue. When a man and a woman are joined together in matrimony the male tends to take over the female’s life because he is the man of the house. “It’s a social lag, so many women are realizing, hey who needs this guy?

I am doing everything by myself, earning a living, and then coming home to clean the house.” Women have learned that having a man around the house is pointless because a lot of wives support their families by going to work while their husbands are jobless sitting at home.

They realize that life would not be much different because they are doing everything anyway. All-in-All a male’s presence in marriage serves no purpose because the female does everything herself.

Divorce happens during marriage because emotions, finances, and property become intertwined. Divorce is the process of untangling what is intertwined. “Baker says increased mobility and the growth of a “national cult of individuality” have left most marriages isolated from the cultural and societal pressures that have historically enforced the standards expressed in a traditional marriage.”

In this world, if you want something you do it yourself or forget about it. People are to busy worrying about their own lives to have time for others. Marriage takes teamwork, in this social time is scarce and the hours just fly by, before you know it a day then a month, and a year passes by.

People rarely get time for themselves and being married adds more stress along with coping with society. “Society can no longer support what we think of like marriage.” Nothing really stays the same. In today’s society, it is not enough for just a man to work to earn a living, both have to work because there is so much to pay for.

Having children is a huge expense on their own. Women and Men’s needs have changed from back then when men wanted to marry, have sons, and have a farm, while women just wanted to marry. People want success and it requires hard work and money which leaves little or no place for marriage. Therefore marriage is an obstacle in the way of people live in this century

Love is invisible in today’s society. “The concept of romantic love as the basis for marriage was virtually unknown to most working people before the 18th century.” Years ago Marriage was arranged between parents it was simple. That is one of the reason’s why divorce was not common.

There were no emotions to get in the way, therefore fewer problems. “It’s unrealistic to expect couples to balance contemporary work demands and heightened desires for personal happiness” The main point is there is no time for love in marriage in today’s society. There is to much stress for people worrying about paying the bills, the children, job pressure, etc. Therefore love is impossible for working people in today’s world.

Traditional marriage has outgrown its value in today’s society because of the changes in economic value, divorce, and love.


Example #3

Marriage and Divorce American Style Taylor Hancock Sociology of Family SOC-213-40 “On average, recent studies show, parents and children in married families are happier, healthier, wealthier, and better adjusted than those in single-parent households. “(Hetherington, 2002). I do not believe in this statement at all. I come from a single-parent household and though we are not wealthy, I am happy, healthy, and well adjusted in the world. At the age of two, my parents got divorced, so I understand the hardships that people go through when a family is torn apart.

There are five different types of marriages: pursuer-distancer, disengaged, operatic, cohesive-individuated, and traditional. “Pursuer-distancer marriages are those mismatches in which one spouse, usually the wife, wants to confront and discuss problems and feelings and the other, usually the husband wants to avoid confrontations and either denies problems or withdrawals. Disengaged marriages are ones where couples share a few interests, activities, or friends. Conflict is low, but so is affection and sexual satisfaction.

Operatic marriages involve couples who like to function at a level of extreme emotional arousal.

They are intensely attracted, attached, and volatile, given both to frequent fighting and to passionate lovemaking. Cohesive-individuated marriages are the yuppie and feminist ideals, characterized by equality, respect, warmth, and mutual support, but also by both partners retaining the autonomy to pursue their own goals and to have their own friends.

Traditional marriages are those in which the husband is the main income producer and the wife’s role is one of nurturance, support, and home and child care. ” (Hetherington, 2002). I was too young to remember what type of marriage my parents had.

I believe that in today’s economy, it is too difficult to have a traditional family. Many families nowadays are two-income households. For marriages that involve children, divorce can be extremely upsetting. After the second year of being divorced people being to recover. And after six years, about 80% of men women have moved on with their lives.

About 75% of men remarry compared to the 60% of women that remarry, but couples are now beginning to cohabit instead. Researchers have found that parents getting remarried cause the children to act out. Both young children and adolescents in divorced and remarried families have been found to have, on average, more social, emotional, academic, and behavioral problems than kids in two-parent, non-divorced families.

My own research, and that of many other investigators, finds twice as many serious psychological disorders and behavioral problems such as teenage pregnancy, dropping out of school, substance abuse, unemployment, and marital break-ups- among the offspring of divorced parents as among the children of non-divorced families. (Hetherington, 2002).

I think that the hardest part of remarriage for divorced families is having a new parental figure in the house. Many children hate the fact that there is someone new in their parent’s life because they want their parents to be together. I went back and forth with my stepmom for years. We have only gotten along for only 6 years out of the 18 years that my dad has been married to her. When I was younger I liked her because she uses to buy me things all the time, but when I found out that she was the reason my parents split up I began to hate her.

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I would always tell her that she cannot tell me what to do because she was not my mother. I remember one day during lent she told me I was going to hell because I was eating a piece of chicken. I so agreed with her that I told her that she was going to hell for committing adultery. I feel bad for the things that I have said to her in the past and everything is better with us now that I am older.


Example #4

Marriage is a lifetime commitment between two parties. It is a social institution, forming a binding contract between spouses in regards to their obligations between them and their relatives. Owing to the fact that it is a social institution, marriages form a broad setup, differing from one culture to the next. The decision to marry and who to marry largely depends on the cultural and religious beliefs of individuals.

According to statistics, marriage institutions in the late twentieth century decreased by 30% (Weastermak 2002). The reasons could be attributed to the fact that more people choose to cohabit rather than to marry. Tough economic times may also prevent men from committing to the marriage institution so as to prevent dowry payment as well as expensive wedding ceremonies.

However, due to the administrative laws put in place, as well as legal rights protecting women, some marriage setups are illegal. These include child and forced marriages, polygamy as well as planned marriages.

Other developments include the existence of civil marriages, which does not recognize the religious fraternity, but rather the rights and obligations outlined by the government. Initially, marriage only involved people of the same gender, but some laws currently allow the union of spouses of a similar gender. This development first surfaced in 13 nations at the beginning of the 21C. Other developments include interracial and interfaith marriage unions.

If well-reviewed at the point of initiating marriage, couples remain prepared for what is expected of them to prevent overwhelming instances by marriage challenges.


Example #5

There are a lot of divorce cases that happened in Malaysia. The divorce cases have dramatically increased in only eight years since 2004. In 2012, 56,760 separations were recorded, which is equivalent to a marriage separate every 10 minutes.

Separation is a very painful decision. Some couples are unable to stay in their relationship until they manage to divorce. Some people also think that life is imperfect until they got married but they don’t know how to manage their relationship perfectly. There are 3 causes that lead to divorce which are lack of communication, cheating, and financial problem.

The first cause is a lack of communication. Lack of communication happens when couples are busy with their work and have no time to spend with each other. Sometimes a couple needs to work harder to have a better life with their family. Lack of communication also happens when the schedule of the couple is different and maybe the man working in the morning and the woman work in the afternoon.

When the couple feels like they have no time to live together, the couple can’t trade their thoughts, neither there is a certainty for endeavoring to take care of their issues. Giving correspondence a chance to fall out of the spotlight of your relationship may put separate among you, influence your accomplice to feel like her emotions aren’t legitimate, or influence you to feel like she couldn’t care less. This can lead to tension and conflict among the marriage.

The second cause of divorce happens is cheating. People are cheating is because they want to have more sexual partners. We all know that sometimes love can give us happiness but sometimes it can be hurt to us. Maybe some couple that lives together for a long time will be bored and not interested anymore with each other.

Most couples that cheat on their partner is because they fall in love with someone new and falling out of love with their old partner. As a couple, Trust in a relationship is important to avoid conflicts happen between each other. Other than that, some couple also feels that cheating can be happiness to them and cheating is their way to of getting bored.

The third cause of divorce happens is a financial problem. Most couples that have a conflict is because having an unsolved financial problem until they manage to divorce. Money is a very important thing that enables us to buy many things in our life but it can’t buy happiness and love.

Some couples who have been living in a luxury lifestyle will find it difficult to deal with financial problems. Many couples also get issues with who wants to control the finances when one of them is the main source of income and some of them trust that the earner is the right to decide how and when the money spent.

A life partner who doesn’t work outside of the house will feel different since he or she deals with the family unit and would best realize what’s required and when. The couple who are a lot of loans or debt will be pressured by financial problems. When you’ve married a gold digger, it will make you realized that your relationship has become more complicated and it will lead your marriage to divorce.

Last but not least, there are many ways to avoid divorce cases increasing. Firstly, the husband should play an important role in marriage.

For example, by allocating their time wisely between work and family. Other than that, the wife also must play an important role such as doing the household chores because that is one of the responsibilities as a wife. For decision-making purposes, the spouse should communicate efficiently in order to solve their problem. Lastly, the couple should be by each other’s side through thick and thin for a long last relationship.


Example #6 – Divorce Nowadays

Nowadays divorce is one of the biggest problems of society in particular families. A divorce is a concluding legal dissolution of marriage. According to the statistic, 2.1 million marriages and 943 thousand divorces took place in the EU in 2013. It means that in every 1000 people were 4.1 marriages and 1.9 divorces. There can be loads of reasons for divorce.

In the present time do not get along with characters. Alcoholism and drug addiction of one of the spouses, infertility, and reluctance to have children, treachery also influences to make a divorce. Such a decision negative effect on society, but the children of spouses are more harmed. Divorce is the most difficult phase of a married couple’s life. As adults, they might eventually get over the tough period, but children become a collateral casualty. Their minds are tender and can slip into a state of shock on seeing parents split forever.

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Divorce is the most difficult phase of a married couple’s life. As adults, they might eventually get over the tough period, but children become a collateral casualty. Their minds are tender and can slip into a state of shock on seeing parents split forever. The adverse effects of divorce can be long-lasting on children and may impact their own relationships. Studies have shown that in the US, the daughters of divorced parents have a 60% higher divorce rate than those of non-divorced parents. The number is 35% for sons.

There some factors that can affect the reaction of the children. Firstly it is gender. Divorce affects boys and girls equally, but in some cases, a particular gender may show a more adverse reaction than the other. For example, depression due to divorce is higher in boys than in girls. On the other hand, girls have a greater tendency to develop severe behavioral problems (MomJunction, 2017 October 25). Overall, divorce has identical and equivalent levels of psychological reactions among children of both genders.

The age of the children also plays a role in how they react to the divorce. Effects of divorce on children under 9 years – the so-called pre-schoolers – are that they tend to blame themselves for the divorce. They also dream about their parents getting back together again someday. That’s wishful thinking. Pre-schoolers need a lot of attention, care, love, and confirmation from them. As a result of the divorce, they might become even more dependent on their parents.

Adolescents (children between 9 and 13 years) react in the opposite direction. They tend to behave more independently. They feel betrayed by their divorced parents. Mistrust enters the relationship. They feel they have to take care of themselves, to take things into their own hands. Mum and dad are apparently putting their interest first.

Among the effects of divorce on children are negative emotions like bitterness, stress, emotional pain, anxiety, fear, feeling abandoned, feeling betrayed, and loss of self-esteem. Judith Wallerstein concluded from her long-term research project that the highest impact of divorce on children comes 15 to 25 years after the divorce when the children enter into a serious romantic relationship. Not during their childhood, adolescence, or young adult phase.

They expect to fail and they fear loss, change, and conflict(Children-and-divorce, n.d.). However, if it is not possible to save the family, there some tips that can help to overcome the period of divorce for children. First of all, do not keep the impending divorce a secret.

Do not tell about divorce at the last moment, because it can confuse and shock the child. It is necessary to find the right time and tell the child everything about your decision Do not shout to the partner with whom you are divorcing, keep your mind clear. Secondly, maintain a healthy routine.

This is applicable especially to toddlers and preschoolers. Do not let divorce disrupt the routine of your child when he/ she is a toddler or an infant. Keep feeding, bathing, and sleeping, all at the same time as it was before. Cuddle with the child and make it a point to spend quality time. It will all bring a sense of normalcy in the life of the child.


Example #7

A law that affected families and households was the divorce reform act in 1969, this made divorce for couples easier, cheaper, and quicker and allowed couples to divorce o the reason of irreconcilable differences, this led to a dramatic increase in the divorce rate between couples.

Due to this, the social attitude of divorce leads to people not taking marriage seriously, also leading to an increase in lone-parent families, which deprived children of their mothers or fathers. The divorce reform act was approved by feminists as it allowed women to leave unwanted marriages more easily.

Another act the 1975 sex discrimination act affected families and households by making it illegal for employers to discriminate against men and women when hiring them. This leads to an increase of women in the workplace that can be working independently or to provide for their family instead of having to rely on a male partner to provide for them.

It affected families by changing the roles within the family, women can now easily contribute to the household income or become the sole breadwinner and the men can now become homemakers without having to worry about the household income. The new right opposed this, as they argued that it would lead to maternal deprivation among children which would have serious consequences on their primary socialization.

A more modern act, the 2013 marriage act allowed Homosexual marriages to be recognized legally, which lead to a large number of same-sex marriages in England and wales. With 1,409 marriages in the first 3 months.

Legalizing same-sex marriages affected households by integrating same-sex relations into common society alongside traditional nuclear families. The new right disagreed with this as they found that it was against traditional heterosexual nuclear families

The child tax credit provided childcare support to families with an income lower than? 42,000 a year. The aim of the policy was to provide benefits to low-income households to use on their children for things such as educational resources.

Although it supported families, benefit fraud also happened to cost taxpayers’ money with HMRC finding? 181.9 Million being cheated. The new right is against this policy as it is against their view that families should be self-sufficient instead of having to rely on external help…

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