Did A Year In Pandemic Lockdown Destroy Your Marriage?
Many sociologists and counselors were surprised to learn that during the past year the number of divorces filed in the United States was down by about 300,000. They were expecting, in fact, for the opposite to occur, what with the additional stresses of the 2020. When a Bowling Green University study indicated that there was actually a decline in divorce countrywide, experts were left to wonder why—and what it means for 2021 and beyond.
Why the 2020 Decrease in Divorce
It made sense that the extraordinary pressures under which families operated during the heights of the pandemic would cause any fractures in marriages to widen. Looking back, many people lost jobs, mourned the loss of loved ones taken by COVID, and spent inordinate amounts of time at home with their kids, who were trying to navigate the complexities of on-line education. Surely, experts opined, the impact on relationships would be exacting. And perhaps they were not wrong. The corrosive impacts, experts tell us, may likely still be ahead of us. That’s because as restrictions loosen up with the waning of COVID, opportunities to explore the possibility of divorce materialize, as well. For some of the very factors that made couples unhappy during the pandemic simultaneously conspired to keep them from divorcing:
- Income Insecurity: Many people were hanging on by a thread due to job loss in the past year. Even considering running two households instead of one was out of the question. For those who hadn’t lost their jobs, many still worried about the possibility of joblessness down the road. Making plans in such a tenuous time just wasn’t feasible for many.
- Custody Concerns: With many schools shuttered, custody issues became more complicated. A custodial parent had to commit to 24-7 parenting and assistance with educational goals that was otherwise not an issue. For parents who were working remotely, it became a matter of juggling one too many balls.
- Closed Offices: For many, it became difficult to get a divorce as a practical matter. Government offices suffered limited shutdowns, reduced hours of operation, and social distancing requirements.
As Things Open Up…
With the country looking toward reopening, jobs are coming back and kids are heading to brick and mortar buildings again. Couples forced to spend countless hours together are getting some breathing room, and government offices are opening. For those who spent a miserable year hating being married, opportunity is knocking. While people were cautious about major life changes at the height of the pandemic, sociologists believe the lid is about to blow for many couples who believe that now that the worst of things is behind us.
Is now the right time for you to consider a divorce? Only you know your circumstances. At WiseLieberman, PLLC, our experienced Boca Raton divorce attorneys are here to guide you and to work for the best possible outcomes for you when divorce is the final option. Contact us in our office for a confidential consultation today.