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The effect health issues have on divorce

Texas residents may be interested to hear that a recently published study shows that the chance of divorce increases when the wife becomes ill. The study sought to answer how health affects marriage.

The researchers looked at 2,701 marriages over the period 1992 to 2010 to see how serious illness affected the marriage. Four categories of illness were used in the study including cardiac and respiratory disease as well as cancer and stroke. Overall, the illnesses correlated with a 6 percent higher chance of divorce.

Some differences were found. While the chance of divorce increased if the wife was ill, a similar situation did not exist when the husband became ill. The authors of the study were unable to determine which partner filed for divorce. They postulated that the wife might have initiated divorce due to her perception that her husband's care was less than adequate. However, no definitive correlation was found.

The study went on to describe how health issues and caregiver status might strain a marriage. When one spouse is unable to work, this puts an additional financial burden on the other spouse.

Caregiving may be associated with taking care of an elderly parent or another relative. The authors noted this might place additional stress on a marriage. They recommend that partners in this situation may benefit from counseling to help resolve problems. Further, the physical and mental stress caregiving places on an individual and the subsequent effect the stress has on substance abuse, depression and other health issues was noted.

Facing divorce may be an emotional time, but practical considerations, such as property division, may benefit from the insight an attorney might provide. The attorney may help structure a divorce agreement that preserves a spouse's rights and assists them in moving on after divorce.

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