Do Divorce Rates Spike After Summer Vacation?

Posted on August 17, 2017 01:44pm
Do Divorce Rates Spike After Summer Vacation?

Some things are more popular during different times of the year. Hot cocoa is better during the winter, pool parties are more fitting in July, and, according to research, divorce is most common after summer ends. While this may seem far-fetched, it can make sense if you think about typical family dynamics and rituals throughout the year. Find out how divorce filings spike each year during March and August, and what it might mean.

The Research

This study, conducted by sociologists at the University of Washington, studied 14 years of divorce data from 37 counties in the state of Washington. Associate sociology professor Julie Brines and doctoral candidate Brian Serafini set out to look for seasonal divorce trends, and the findings did not disappoint. They discovered there was a “domestic ritual” which showed peak times for divorce filings in March and August, the months following winter and summer holidays, respectively. Not surprisingly, couples likely wish to remain united with their families during the summer. It’s possible that couples feel their planned vacations and getaways may serve as a refresher for their relationship, restoring normalcy and solving problems that otherwise hadn’t been fixable.

Why Holidays and Vacations?

Holidays and vacations are considered sacred to many families, and couples who find themselves facing marital issues might push those troubles aside temporarily to enjoy their time with their family together. In the months of November and December, especially, the number of divorce filings drops very low, likely because couples are attempting to mend their relationships or try again at the start of the new year.

Some couples likely chose to stay together for their children during the holidays or summer vacations so that they can enjoy the sacred time as a family unit.

Other Explanations

It’s also possible that this cycle follows when people are most optimistic or ready for change. Other research has shown that when days are longer people feel more motivated to act on their feelings and desires. Along this same line of thinking, couples may feel more motivated to act on their divorce when spring begins and summer ends.

If the research is any indication, most couples seem to act in what they see as the best interest of their families, attempting to salvage troubled marriages during time together and choosing to file for divorce after the holidays and vacations have passed.

Regardless of the timing, divorce remains a difficult process for everyone involved. If you are going through a divorce, our attorneys can help. Contact McKinley Irvin family lawyers in Oregon if you need assistance regarding your divorce.
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