Millennials Push US Divorce Rate Down

New study says it is millennials responsible for a decrease in the divorce rate.

Wedding Rings as part of a divorce proceeding
gerasimov_foto_174 / Shutterstock

New study says it is millennials responsible for a decrease in the divorce rate.

It may surprise some people, but a new study has found that divorce rates are falling in the United States because of Americans under 45, reports Bloomberg.

Data has shown that the divorce rate in the country has been decreasing for several years, and so demographers have been exploring what the cause for the decrease has been. In analysis just released by the University of Maryland sociology professor Phillip Cohen, the divorce rate has dropped by 18 percent from 2008 to 2016.

Cohen’s data suggests that younger couples are looking to learn lessons from baby boomers, who married younger and then divorced. Americans under 45 have been waiting to marry, perhaps finding a more suitable partner, but also waiting until education, careers, and money are firmly established in their individual lives before merging life in a marriage.

The decreased divorce rate comes at a time with a decreased marriage rate, but Cohen has already factored that into his data, so that’s not what is dragging down the divorce rate. When looking at the data it suggests more that younger people are having marriages that seem to have a better chance of standing the test of time than the marriages of baby boomers.

Millennials have been given the credit for the reduced divorce rate as baby boomers continue to have a higher than usual divorce rate. Baby boomers have been divorcing well into their 70s, at a rate which has been historically high.

From 1990-2015 the divorce rate for Americans 65 and over tripled according Bowling Green National Center for Family and Marriage Research. Cohen’s research found that rate seems to be leveling out recently, but baby boomers are still getting divorced at a much higher rate than earlier generations did at the same age.

What is most striking about the “grey divorce” findings is that people 55 and over are divorcing at the highest rate of any age bracket. The highest divorce rates had previously been in the 45-54 bracket, but in the last six years that has been overtaken. The only two age brackets where the divorce rate is decreasing are the age groups below 45.

Cohen found that as fewer people are getting married, those that make the choice to get married are the least likely demographic groups to get divorced.

Millennials have often been blamed for “killing” industries and may now be adding divorce attorneys to the list.