Why Do Women Initiate Divorce More?

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Research shows that almost 70 percent of divorce are initiated by women, which may sound strange given that women are stereotypically and traditionally perceived to be the ones who want to settle down. Society and expectations have changed dramatically over the years and women now feel more empowered to make decisions such as starting divorce proceedings.

Some of the reasons that women are initiating more divorces than men include:

Improved gender equality

While gender equality may still have a long way to go to be seen as being fully equal, big progress has been made in this area. Compared to 30 or 40 years ago, women have been able to pursue more types of careers and we have seen more women in higher levels of roles. Women in general now feel less reliant on their husbands for financial support, where many years ago this was rarely the case. This progress and greater equal opportunities give women the safety of knowing that they are not financially dependent on their spouse and confidence that they will be able to cope financially if they get divorced.

Women are more empowered

In the past, more women would put up with bad behaviour such as infidelity or other disrespectful behaviour from their husband. In the modern world, a lot of women won’t put up with anything less than how they want to be treated. There are some very strong, powerful female role models such as world leaders, doctors, musicians, actresses etc. who demonstrate to society that women should take control of their own destiny and make decisions that will make them happy.

Expectations are higher from women

Women are more likely to have higher expectations of what they want from their marriage, including romance and being in a team, where both partners are building towards their joint future. Some studies show that men, on the other hand, are more likely to start making less effort in the marriage and neglect their wife’s needs. In some cases, men might feel that they are not particularly happy in their marriage but they do not see a need to start divorce proceedings, as they know it will require a lot of effort and can cost a lot in divorce fees and solicitor’s fees.

Domestic activities not shared equally

In a large percentage of marriages, women still do a lot more of the domestic work compared to their husbands, even with full-time jobs and other commitments. Many men have been brought up in homes where their mother did the majority of the housework, and that is instilled in their idea of what happens in relationships. Also, it is often the case that women are more concerned about having an untidy house, so they are more likely to clean and tidy up before their husband would think to do it. After doing this for a while, it can become very frustrating and if other aspects of the marriage are not working out how the wife hoped, then they may decide they want out. 

If you are contemplating initiating divorce, don’t try to navigate the divorce process alone, make sure that you confide in your close friends and family and seek expert divorce advice. Even though it is becoming so common for women to file for divorce, if your spouse contests the divorce, the process can get more complicated.

It is recommended that you speak to a divorce lawyer for advice before you start proceedings, to help you to prepare details that will show the courts that you have grounds for divorce. They can tell you what to expect and what documents you will need to get started with your divorce petition.