New Study Links Siblings to Divorce Probability

The social skills that develop as a child may be important to the longevity of marriage as an adult. This is according to a new study which was revealed by researchers from Ohio State University. The results were first shared at the annual meeting of the American Sociology Association on August 13th in New York City.

Using information collected from the General Social Survey, these researchers looked at trends which influence divorce. The data spanned 40 years and represents over 57,000 adults from across the country. Those participants were interviewed 28 times during that time frame.

Two sociology professors from OSU authored the study that reviewed different contributing factors that affect the likelihood of divorce, such as education, socioeconomic status, race, age, religion and family structure. They saw a trend when they researched how the number of siblings that people had and the influence that had on divorce later in life.

Doug Downey, co-author of the study and Sociology professor at OSU, credits the role that siblings play in developing relationship skills. The research seems to bear that out as well. For each sibling up to a total of seven, the likelihood of divorce decreases by two percent.

Co-author and associate professor of Sociology at OSU, Donna Bobbitt-Zeher added that the family dynamic would change with each additional sibling. “More siblings means more experience with others, and that seems to provide additional help in dealing with a marriage relationship as an adult.”

There are many detractors of this new study's conclusions. Sociologist Philip Morgan says that new generations of kids have more opportunities to gain social skills that don't rely on siblings. More research is necessary before relying on this initial study about the effects that siblings have on divorce.

Whether or not you are an only child or have many siblings, each divorce is personal and may be caused by different reasons. If your marriage has changed and you are looking to file for divorce, then seek the assistance of a legal professional. Contact an experienced family law attorney in DuPage County today.

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