Nowadays, in spite of the decrease of divorce rates, the U.S.A. remains to have one of the highest rates of divorce. Millions of people all over the world wonder why those couples who were going to be happy in their marriage, eventually, make up their mind to divorce. The problem lies in numerous social changes which are being taking place.
To begin with, about 40% of all first marriages result in a divorce; the divorce race, which is so high, demonstrates that “many people may no longer believe in the permanence of marriage”. Nowadays, there is no stereotype which can state that people must be married until the death of one of the spouses as the majority of citizens admit that, in numerous cases, divorce is the only way to solve numerous psychological problems, which are caused by the unhappy marriage, and to prevent the children of the couple from such kind of problems.
There are some reasons for the presence of this point of view in the society. First of all, it is the fact the marriage functions had been changed; it resulted in the increase of divorce rates. “Marriage changed from a formal institution that meets the needs of the large society to a companionate relationship that meets the needs of the couple and their children and then to a private pact that meets the psychological needs of individual spouses”. In some cases, people understand that their personal needs or the needs which were expected to be met in the marriage are not met, the spouses divorce. As a rule, each of them hopes that their expectations will be met with an other spouse.
In the research of the concept of a divorce and its causes, the social exchange theory plays an integral role. In accordance with this theory, a divorce is stimulated by the events which happened before it. In other words, one can try to find the reason of the divorce only by means of the profound analysis of the period of time which preceded it. The advocates of the social exchange theory can not help notifying that “how good the marriage is depends on the person’s satisfactions with his or her share of the rewards and costs”. Besides the personal needs of a personality, which have already been mentioned in the paper, rewards comprise support, love, emotional security, companionship, sexual relations, connections, social status of the spouse, assistance of the partner in the fulfilling of the daily tasks, property, financial support, etc. Costs include such notions as extra responsibilities, new habits, which can be quite annoying, limited freedom and so on. If these costs prevail, a couple is likely to divorce. Moreover, emotions caused by a large amount of costs can be a reason for a divorce. People who tend to consider marriage as an institution which can not be permanent are likely to be lead by their emotional state. Anger and annoyance are the major factors which have an impact on the decision of the spouses to divorce.
Another prerequisite of the increase of the amount of divorces is the growing independence of women. Earlier, women needed to live even in unhappy marriages because of the financial needs. In most cases, they did not have an opportunity to work; even when they were provided such chance, their salaries were not high enough to support them and their children. This was one of the principal reasons why wives were dependent on their husbands. Nowadays, the situation has already been given an added gloss as women are as much successful at work as men. This is one more proofs of the fact that one of the divorce prerequisites is the social status of one of the spouses.
On the other hand, the tendencies can be positive as there are some solutions of the divorces problem. First of all, the “children of the divorce-epidemic generation” desire to do their best in preventing themselves and their partner from an unsuccessful marriage. They remember the negative influence of their parents divorce on their personality and psychological state, and they want to avoid the similar emotions in their future. In spite of the fact that only some children of divorced parents manage to be happy in their marriage, the fear of a divorce is one of the most effective methods to prevent this problem.
One more solution of the problem of high divorce rates is implementing various social policies. Taking into consideration the fact that the increase of the amount of never-married mothers and single-parent families is obvious, it is more than important to implement those policies which can prevent the abovementioned phenomenon. This is the reason why the society must be persuaded in the necessity to make the relationships between people tighter. The stereotype about the absence of the necessity for people to live together in case of some conflicts must disappear.
The abovementioned social policy can be more than effective. If people are persuaded that any relationships are valuable for both of the spouses, they are more likely to use any opportunity to be together. One of the best means to implement this policy is various kinds of social advertising. As a rule, mass media is one of the most successful sources of such kinds of advertisements as they provide people of all social classes to get acquainted with the information presented there. Printed press as well as television and radio are inevitable parts of everyday life of people all over the world so the success of the discussed social campaign can be evident.
Both the intended and unintended consequences of this policy are the reduction of divorces and the profound changes of stereotypes. If people are influenced by the abovementioned social advertising, it can prevent numerous citizens from a divorce. Furthermore, the understanding of the necessity to value relationships can lead to the decrease of stresses whereas the amount of mothers who have never been married can also be reduced. Any positive result is a progress and a step forward; that is why the representatives of the mass media should pay more attention to social advertising and the problem of divorces in particularly.
What is more, the public should not be afraid of bringing up children. The social campaigns aimed at persuading people in this, can not only prevent divorces but also be one more way to reduce the quantity of single-parent families.
Another social policy which may have been developed to address the problem of divorces is testing. It is noteworthy to provide those couples who are going to marry a test which can demonstrate them if they are ready to have any family relationships. It is of common knowledge that a lot of spouses are too young to be responsible for the family, and it can also become a prerequisite of a divorce. Furthermore, the tests must be created by well-qualified and experienced psychologists; in this case, people have an opportunity to understand if their marriage is going to be successful. If some problems can be present in the family life of the couple, psychologists should warn both of them about these possible problems. The purpose of this testing is to reveal any of them in order to prevent a divorce and, in this way, to give an added gloss to the current situation of high divorces rate. On the other hand, such kind of testing should be not only available for all ordinary people but also voluntary as this is a only those couples who are intended to know the results of the test should participate in the social program.
In conclusion, it is noteworthy to notify that the problem of divorces should be solved as soon as possible as the situation is becoming quite threatening. In accordance with the conducted study, the main reasons of the increased divorce rate are social ones. In spite of the fact that the majority of spouses desire to make the marriage meet their personal demands the profound changes of the views of the citizens on marriage and their role in it became the prerequisites for the increase of the divorces amount. The principal solution of the problem is implementing some social programs which can change the public opinion and stimulate the increase of happy marriages.