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U.S. Divorce Statistics

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Marriage and Divorce Statistics (2002)
Percentage of population that is married: 59% (down from 62% in 1990, 72% in 1970)
Percentage of population that has never married: 24%
Percentage of population that is divorced: 10% (up from 8% in 1990, 6% in 1980)
Percentage of population that is widowed: 7%
Median age at first marriage: Males: 26.9
Females: 25.3
Median age at first divorce: Males: 30.5
Females: 29
Median age at second marriage: Males: 34
Females: 32
Median age at second divorce: Males: 39.3
Females: 37
Median duration of first marriages that end in divorce: Males: 7.8 years
Females: 7.9 years
Median duration of second marriages that end in divorce: Males: 7.3 years
Females: 6.8 years
Median number of years people wait to remarry after their first divorce: Males: 3.3 years
Females: 3.1 years
Percentage of married people who reach their 5th, 10th, and 15th anniversaries: 5th: 82%
10th: 65%
15th: 52%
Percentage of married people who reach their 25th, 35th, and 50th anniversaries: 25th: 33%
35th: 20%
50th: 5%
Percentage of people who have ever been married by the age of 25: Males: 32%
Females: 50%
Percentage of people who have ever been married by the age of 35: Males: 77%
Females: 84%
Percentage of people who have ever been married by the age of 45: Males: 87%
Females: 90%
Percentage of people who have ever been married by the age of 55: Both males and females: 95%
Number of unmarried couples living together: 5.5 million
Percentage of unmarried couples living together that are male-female unions: 89%
More information on marriage and divorce:
Stepping off the Roller Coaster
Divorce Recovery
Say Goodbye with Love
Keep Your Marriage Together
Divorce: What went wrong?

Click here for a state-by-state ranking of divorce rates.

Children/Single parents:

(2000 except where noted)

Percentage of households which are family households: 68.8%
Percentage of households with their own children under 18: 33%
Percentage of married householders with kids: 24%
Percentage of all households run by single moms: 9.2%
Percentage of all households run by single dads: 1.9%
Number of single parents: Males: 2.04 million
Females: 9.68 million
Percentage of children under 18 years of age living with both parents (2002): 69%
Percentage of children under 18 years of age living with mother only (2002): 23%
Percentage of children under 18 years of age living with father only (2002): 5%
Percentage of children under 18 years of age living with neither parent (2002): 4%
Total single fathers maintaining their own household: 1.786 million
Total single fathers living in the home of a relative: 240,000
Total single fathers who are divorced: 913,000
Total single fathers never married: 693,000
Total single fathers raising one child: 1,300,000
Total single fathers raising four or more children: 55,000
Total single mothers maintaining their own household: 7.571 million
Total single mothers living in the home of a relative: 1.633 million
Total single mothers who are divorced: 3.392 million
Total single mothers never married: 4.181 million
Total single mothers raising one child: 5.239 million
Total single mothers raising four or more children: 475,000
For US Census Bureau data on child support for custodial parents, please click here.
Fatherless homes account for 63% of youth suicides, 90% of homeless/runaway children, 85% of children with behavior problems, 71% of high school dropouts, 85% of youths in prison, well over 50% of teen mothers.
Miscellaneous:
Married women earning at least $5,000 a year more than their husbands: 8.408 million (14.9% of all married women)
Unmarried women earning at least $5,000 a year more than their partners: 821,000 (21.5% of unmarried couples)
Married men earning at least $5,000 a year more than their wives: 33.228 million (58.8% of all married men)
Unmarried men earning at least $5,000 a year more than their partners: 2.099 million (54.9% of unmarried couples)
Married couples in which only the husband is employed: 12.642 million (22.4%)
Married couples in which only the wife is employed: 3.855 million (6.8%)
Married couples in which both partners are employed: 30.212 million (53.5%)
Unmarried couples in which only the male is employed: 695,000 (18.2%)
Unmarried couples in which only the female is employed: 410,000 (10.7%)
Unmarried couples in which both partners are employed: 2.484 million (65%)

(Sources: U.S. Census Bureau, National Center for Health Statistics, Americans for Divorce Reform, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Institute for Equality in Marriage, American Association for Single People, Ameristat, Public Agenda)

NOTE: If you can't find the statistic you're looking for on these pages, we don't have it. You might try searching the following websites for an answer to your question:

For more divorce statistics, click here.
To find a divorce lawyer by state or province, click here.
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For FAQs on divorce, click here.

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