For most people, there comes a time when playing the field is no longer an acceptable option for their life. The concept of hitting nightclubs with friends, drinking copious amounts of alcohol, and hooking up for one-night stands or casual relationships becomes distasteful. Eventually people end up meeting the one, and they are so sure of themselves, the groom spends an extravagant amount on the engagement ring while both of them do the same for the wedding. Four years later, the journey that husband and wife were supposed to take until death do them part is about to end abruptly after the signage of divorce papers.
The above scenario surely ends on a gloomy note, but it is a reality that statistically half of all marriages will likely go through. However, there is a detail in the scenario above that may actually be the primary reason why the marriage failed in the first place, and it has to do with the price tag of the engagement ring and wedding. A paper now shows a strong relationship between expenditure to marriage duration… and it isn’t good if said expenditure is expensive.
According to Social Science Research Network, economics professors at Emory University analyzed the association between wedding spending and marriage duration using data from a survey of over 3,000 ever-married people in the United States. Controlling for a number of demographic and relationship characteristics, evidence was found that marriage duration is inversely associated with spending on the wedding ceremony and the engagement ring.
Huffington Post also reported on this analysis in which the professors provided statistics on the possibility of divorce in association to money spent. There were two examples provided.
- Men who spent $2,000 to $4,000 on an engagement ring were 1.3 times more likely to end up in divorce compared to men who spent $500 to $2,000.
- Women who had weddings costing $30,000 or more were 3.5 times more likely to end up in divorce than women who spent $5,000 to $10,000.
Now, to be frank, it technically isn’t high price tags of engagement rings and weddings that causes divorce. There are plenty of couples who paid cash for both and are still going strong many years afterwards. The underlying issue has to do with couples who borrow the money for their “perfect wedding,” usually through credit cards or loans. Summarized, it is debt that causes divorce. According to Examiner, financial issues – translation: debt – is the leading cause for divorce in marriages. What is surprising is that fact isn’t exactly old news! Many well-known financial experts such as Dave Ramsey and Ron Leiber know about the negative impact a large amount of debt would have on a marriage. Therefore, both enforce the importance of couples discussing finances way before tying the knot.
In conclusion, for those who are thinking about tying the knot eventually, it is probably best to follow the advice of the financial experts above. You may think that the debt from an engagement ring and/or wedding is a weight around your neck, wait until you see what divorce costs.
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