Tuesday, October 29, 2013

How to Stay Married

Go to college. Education, and in particular a college degree, appears to be the key to a long-lasting marriage, according to a study of marriage and divorce by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Based on data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979, which is tracking a cohort of Americans born between 1957 and 1964, the BLS found striking differences by educational attainment in the probability of a long-lasting marriage.

Among the ever-married in 2010-11 (when the cohort was aged 45 to 52), only 49 percent of those who went no further than high school were still in their first marriage. The figure was a much larger 69 percent among their counterparts with a bachelor's degree.

What accounts for these differences? Age at first marriage is one factor. The older the age at first marriage, the lower the probability of divorce. Young adults who spend time earning a degree marry at an older age than those who do not devote years to their education. Consequently, college graduates are more mature when they marry and less likely to divorce. Another factor is money. The less educated often have low earnings, leading to marital stress and a higher likelihood of divorce.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Marriage and Divorce: Patterns by Gender, Race, and Educational Attainment

1 comment:

Sean Catherall said...

There is a logic problem with the last paragraph of this article. If age at first marriage or earnings can account for the difference in marriage durability among college graduates, why is age at first marriage or earnings not the focus of the article?