10 Interesting Things About Marriage

1) Due to jobs, kids, TV, the Internet, hobbies, and home and family responsibilities, the average married couple spends just four minutes a day awake & alone together. (2)

2) Over 75% of people who marry partners from an affair eventually divorce. (3)

3) Marrying younger than age 25 dramatically raises the divorce risk. Also, the divorce risk is higher when the woman is much older than the man, though the reverse isn't as a strong factor. (5)

4) The probability of a first marriage ending in a divorce within 5 years is 20%, but the probability of a premarital cohabitation breaking up within 5 years is 49%. After 10 years, the probability of a first marriage ending is 33%, compared with 62% for cohabitations. (2)

5) Approximately $6 billion in revenue is lost by American businesses as a result of decreased worker productivity linked to marriage hardship. Employees in a happy marriage, in contrast, tend to increase a company's bottom line. (2)

6) Marriage does more to promote life satisfaction than money, sex, or even children, say Wake Forest University psychologists. (2)

7) More than friendship, laughter, forgiveness, compatibility, and sex, spouses name trust as the element crucial for a happy marriage. (2)

8) A 15-year-long study found that a person's happiness level before marriage was the best predictor of happiness after marriage. In other words, marriage won't automatically make one happy. (1)

9) Over 40% of married couples in the U.S. include at least one spouse who has been married before. As many as 60% of divorced women and men will marry again, many within just five years. (2)

10) Birth order can influence whether a marriage succeeds or fails. The most successful marriages are those where the oldest sister of brothers marries the youngest brother of sisters. Two firstborns, however, tend to be more aggressive and can create higher levels of tension. The highest divorce rates are when an only child marries another only child. (4)

Sources cited by number above:

1) Gottman, John M. and Julie Schwartz Gottman. 2006. 10 Lessons to Transform Your Marriage. New York, NY: Three Rivers Press.

2) Harrar, Sari and Rita DeMaria. 2007. The 7 Stages of Marriage: Laughter, Intimacy, and Passion. Pleasantville, NY: Reader's Digest Books.

3) Hein, Holly. Sexual Detours: Infidelity and Intimacy at the Crossroads. 2000. New York, NY: St. Martin's Press.

4) Mannes, George. "Is the Economy Ruining Your Marriage?" CNN.com. August 21, 2009. Accessed: October 27, 2009.

5) Neal, Rome. "Signs of Divorce Ahead?: New Study Tries to Predict Which Marriages Will Last." CBSNEWS.com. August 7, 2002. Accessed: October 29, 2009.