Identity / Motherhood / Relationships / Society

Teenagers May Contribute To More Divorces

Although tempted to take a page from The Melbourne Institute’s paper that was titled more along the lines of ‘Teenage Daughters as a Cause of Divorce’ I shall not, since that would be thoroughly misleading to the conclusions made at the end of the study. In this study  two million marriages  in the Netherlands were studied over 10 years and, although parents of girls were found to be more likely to divorce, this is not necessarily a direct cause to effect correlation.

More so this study brings to light the continued difference in how many societies and cultures raise and treat females versus their male counterparts. With increased supervision, restrictions and less autonomy being major differentiating factors between the gender roles, it is clear that teenage females in particular, seem to experience more obvious struggles when on the cusp of adulthood. However this study points more toward the fact that the teenage years cause an obvious strain on marriages overall, regardless of the gender of the child/children. Think what you may but I am inclined to believe that this is more of a sign that parents need to really build and continually nurture open, supportive and honest relationships with their children. Of course this will not eradicate all the bumps on the road but it should ensure that eventually you and your teenager are able to regain each other’s trust, and rebuild your relationship together, and possibly even stronger than before.

This study also implies that gender roles are not merely harmful to the child bu also to the parents and families around the individuals in question. If gender roles of any kind of forced onto an unwilling individual life will be unpleasant for ALL parties involved. As the parents force their ideals onto the child, the child will push back until the resentment reaches boiling point and they act out in their teenage years. The parents will continue try, but think they are failures and project their disappointment in themselves onto the child who is already drowning under the weight of their parents’ exceptions. When you look at it from this point of view, the teenage years are indeed perilous for  family ties overall and most definitely for a marriage.