Recent Study Reveals Increased Length In Deployments Will Increase The Risk Of Military Divorce
A recent study conducted by the RAND Corporation with the Department of Defense sponsorship found that increased length in deployments will increase the risk of divorce. The study goes into detail regarding marriages originating prior to and after the September 11, 2001, attacks. The study found that couples who married prior to the attacks and had one of the spouses deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan were over 20% more likely to divorce than couples who married after the September 11 attacks. The researchers conducting this study believed that this was likely due to the fact that couples who married after the attacks were better equipped to deal with the challenges of war.
Another study conducted in 2011 found that military divorce rates overall had an uptick from what they had been in the past. This study found that from 2000-2011 the enlisted military divorce rate increased drastically from 2.9% to 4.2%, edging out the civilian rate of divorce. A San Diego divorce attorney opined that the increased rate is caused most likely by the low age of most military members and the lack of emotional maturity needed to deal with long-term separation.
In 2012, military divorce did take a slight downward turn, lowering in every category except in female members of the Marine Corp, which remained very high (~9%). Military Chaplains have recognized a standing problem in the divorce rates among military members and have offered some explanations that they believe may be causing the still (even with the downturn) increased rate. They believe that since the combat deployment numbers are scaling down many military members are staying at home now, placing them into an often unknown civilian lifestyle. Chaplain members have stated their desire to delve deeper into the issues and offer counseling to help change the course of divorce rates among military members.
The informative graphic below illustrates a plethora of information from the 1995-2011 year regarding military divorces illustrating the uptick in numbers.
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Our Dayton, Ohio, law firm represents many military members and their spouses in divorce actions in great part due to our proximity to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. If you are having marital issues, it is prudent to consider consulting with an experienced family law attorney. In our experience, multiple deployments have created huge stresses in military marriages. A very sad reality often unrecognized by society!
Here are also a few other military divorce links which might be of interest:
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Robert L. Mues
Robert Mues is the managing partner of Dayton, Ohio, law firm, Holzfaster, Cecil, McKnight & Mues, and has received the highest rating from the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review for Ethical Standards and Legal Ability. Mr. Mues is also a founding member of the "International Academy of Attorneys for Divorce over 50" blog.