As of the 1960s and into the 1980s divorce increased dramatically and the question is why (Insider.com)? It is one thing when couples that have been married for only a year or two but couples that have been married for over thirty years? Why? How can a couple that has been married that long or longer then decide they don’t want to be together anymore? What about the couples that have been married for less than that?
Divorce is not an easy topic to deal with the effects is not only to those directly involved but it also affects family and friends.
What are the causes of divorce? The most widely known one is cheating but there are also those that claim to fall out of love and those that say that they are no longer compatible (Institute for Family Studies). The main crux of this problem is that instead of looking at marriage as a covenant most couples tend to look at it like a contract.
This is only the beginning of the downfall.
Going back as early as the 1900s divorce was always seen as taboo and it just didn’t happen and this was mostly because one: the couple really loved each other and two: they didn’t want to mentally and emotionally scar their children. According to psychological studies and research on Verywellfamily.com the first year of divorce is always the toughest. During this time the children experience anger, distress, and disbelief and while some may seem to recover others have ongoing and possibly, lifelong problems afterwards.
In this same website they also explain the emotional impact that divorce brings: There is often a lack of understanding of why they are having to go between two homes, They see the divorce as their fault, the teenages may become angry at the change and end up resenting one or both of the parents.
As said before the stress and impact of divorce is not solely on the kids but it ends up spreading out to other members of the family. In some cases one parent may manipulate the kids into thinking it is the other spouse’s fault and completely alienate them from that spouse’s side of the family. As with the children extended family and friends can also experience anger and confusion (Agweek.com). The trickiest effect that takes place is the decision to take sides and sometimes it is hard to tell which side is right and which is wrong (lifesupportscounseling.com). The biggest problem that comes out of this is a lack of communication on how anyone feels which makes resolving any issues all the more difficult.
In the christian family there is the commonly held belief that they are divorce free but unfortunately that is not the case. The christian family while it does have a lower divorce rate than the world still experiences problems (thegospelcoalition.org). The biggest question that has to be asked regarding this is: what does the Bible say regarding divorce? In Malachi, God makes it very clear that he doesn’t like divore, in fact he hates it. Why? It tarnishes his image because when he created marriage in the garden he meant to be a representation of himself (Ingle, pg. 9). The one verse that gets misquoted so often is in Ephesians where Paul says “Wives submit to your husbands”. This verse right here has been the cause of so many issues regarding a christian marriage. What is not read is what Paul states below that when he says “ Husbands love your wives as Christ loves the Church”. What Paul was saying was that marriage should not only reflect the love of God but also reflect the love that Jesus has for the Church.
In the christian family as well as the world there have been scandals that have involved cheating. In the christian world the biggest scandal to ever come out was when Jimmy Swaggert was caught with a prostitute. At the time he had one of the largest ministries that the world has ever seen. It completely shocked the church world and it struggled to recover from the blow. One of the biggest problems that Jimmy Swaggert faced with running a huge ministry like he did was that he had to deal with a lot of pride. Pride in some ways is good but it is always there ready to hurt you in the place it hurts the most Jimmy Swaggert would give a public confession but he would be caught two more times afterwards.
Over the course of history society has seen many scandals take place the most prominent one especially when it comes to cheating is when in 1999 Clinton was impeached for having sexual relations with one of the secretaries that worked for him. It became one of the most famous scandals in modern history and it shows that it doesn’t matter the prominence or importance that temptation is always out there lurking.
One of the biggest issues when it comes to divorce is that couples that have been married for years and seem to have the perfect marriage only to suddenly announce that they are separating. Why? As stated in the intro the biggest reason is infidelity which in most cases and even Biblically would stand as grounds for the divorce but why couldn’t there be a way to counsel the couple? The second reason is that there is a falling out in love. The question arises then: Was there ever love in the first place or was it just infatuation that eventually just wore off?
The third reason is that there is no more compatibility and again it must be asked: Was it ever there in the first place? Whatever the reason if the couple can stay together for that long then there must be something that is there to keep the relationship going. If that is the case then why give up? By that reasoning God should have given up a long time ago when things didn’t work out but yet he is still here. Why? Because he is an everlasting God that will always be there and he will never give up.
The lie that is told is that divorce is better but it is always dirty and it is never pretty. There was a movie that came out a few years ago called Courageous. What the film was about was how in gangs that most of the members come from a broken home and how they are raised by one parent and sometimes neither. For these members the only source of family was to be in a gang because none of them ever experienced what it was like to have a family and that is the closest thing that they had to that. Divorce is a disease that needs to be cured and it shouldn’t be seen as the easy way out. There is often bewilderment and confusion on why people act they way they do and more often than not they are the product of divorce.
As of late the divorce rate has been dropping and that is not exactly good news. The reason for the drop in this divorce rate is the new way of living. Couples now have decided that before they get married that they need to live together in order to see how marriage should work. Most of these couples never get married and still live together.
For a child that is born into this type of family it can be very confusing because for one the spouse’s don’t have the same last name so the child either gets the father or the mother’s last name. There is also the problem that children tend to emulate their parents so when this child grows up chances are they will have a partner they will live with.
To the world it just makes sense but Biblically it doesn’t align with what God has commanded to his people. God commands that before any sexual act or living together that the couple should be married and not only that but it must be male and female. Society today has gotten so messed up. The fact that there is now a calling for gay rights and while the Church has seen a resurgence as of late there is still a lot of conflict that is directed at the Church.
The United States of America was founded on Godly principles and throughout history has maintained that integrity. The rise of Divorce in the 1960s was mostly caused by the counterculture that was happening at the time. With the Beatles, the riots, and the ideas that came as a result divorce was only one of many major dilemmas that was faced. Since then it continued to grow with a lot of actors and actresses have been divorced and remarried several times over. Unfortunately it has influenced society in a way that nobody expected and continues to do so. With the new wave of living together the world has never been more confused than it is now.