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Posted on in Divorce

infidelity social media cheating divorceWhile every newlywed couple would like to believe that their marriage will beat the odds and last forever, nearly 50 percent of all married couples end up filing for divorce. After years of studying both successful and failed marriages, the American Psychological Association has identified several factors that may indicate a marriage is more likely to end in divorce.

 According to the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), demographics may play an important role in predicting whether a marriage will last until its 20th wedding anniversary. Statistics show that African-American women have the lowest chance of a lasting marriage, at 37 percent, while Caucasian men and women, as well as African-American men's chances stand at just over 50 percent. Male Hispanic immigrants and Asian women stand the highest chance of achieving a lasting marriage, at 70 percent.

A couple's financial situation also plays a vital role in determining whether the marriage will last. According to a study completed by the University of Virginia's National Marriage Project, couples with little or no assets are as much as 70 percent more likely to divorce within three years than those who have at least $10,000 in assets. This comes as little surprise to most marital therapists, who state that money and finances represent the most common source of tension in most marriages.

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prenuptial agreement IMAGEPrior to getting married, it is important to discuss things such as potential children, jobs, and where you both will live. One subject that might be harder to talk about is about money. That is especially the case if one spouse comes into the relationship with a better financial position such as higher wages, property or a possible inheritance. That spouse may want to protect their assets in the future by drafting a prenuptial agreement.

There are certain things that a properly written prenup can achieve. It is generally used to specify how assets shall be divided on the chance that the marriage ends in divorce. It can also dictate how certain separate or marital assets can be characterized, managed and controlled. This is essential if either spouse owns a family business or home prior to becoming married. Also if either spouse has a large amount of debt, it can protect the other from being financially responsible. A prenup may also dictate if a spouse is eligible to receive alimony or direct how much support can be awarded.

There are other aspects of a divorce which cannot be changed by a prenuptial agreement. Child support, custody and visitation cannot be negatively impacted by any prenuptial agreement. It is also incapable of including any action that is against state or federal law.

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A recent study, conducted by the Buffalo Research Institute on Addictions (RIA), has linked the differences in a spouse's alcohol consumption habits to divorce. Kenneth Leonard, Ph.D., RIA director and lead author of the study stated,"Our results indicate that it is the difference between the couple's drinking habits, rather than the drinking itself, that leads to marital dissatisfaction, separation and divorce."

alcohol consumption and marriage Researchers followed 634 couples over the first nine years of their marriage and found that close to 50 percent of couples "where only one partner drank more heavily" would end up divorcing, while the divorce rates for other couples was only 30 percent. The study also found that the divorce rate remained the same for couples where both partners consumed large amounts of alcohol, showing that they were just as likely to stay together as couples who were not heavy drinkers or drinkers at all. "This research provides solid evidence to bolster the commonplace notion that heavy drinking by one partner can lead to divorce. Although some people might think that's a likely outcome, there was surprisingly little data to back up that claim until now," stated Leonard.

The study defined a heavy drinker as one who drank "six or more drinks at one time or drinking to intoxication." And while moderate alcohol consumption may not be harmful or lead to alcoholism, MedlinePlus, a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine, reports that "about 18 million adult Americans are alcoholics or have alcohol problems." Alcoholism is a disease with four main features, including craving, loss of control, physical dependence and tolerance.

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LeeviAn Arizona man who gave birth to three children after having a sex-change operation may not be able to divorce his wife, according to a recent story on WFAA.com. Thomas Beatie, who was born as a woman, underwent a sex-change surgery but his reproductive organs were not removed. Thomas and Nancy Beatie decided to file for divorce after 9 years of marriage. However, a judge is questioning whether the state's same-sex marriage ban prevents Thomas Beatie from ending his marriage.

A number of courts all over the country have declared marriages involving a transgender person invalid. However, according to Shannon Minter, legal director for the National Center for Lesbian Rights, this case is different and has different factual and legal issues than other cases involving a transgender person. "What you have is a man and woman who are married, and their relationship is ending," he said. "And it's no different, fundamentally, from other people in that circumstance."

Thomas Beatie started testosterone treatments in 1997 and underwent surgeries in 2002. He was married to Nancy in 2003 in Hawaii and became pregnant because Nancy could not have children. Beatie gave birth to three children who are now between 2 to 4 years old. The married couple later moved to Arizona. Both agree that the marriage should end.

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