Divorce is often a difficult process, both emotionally and financially. Not only can figuring out what to do after you and your spouse split up be challenging, but the cost of paying for a divorce can leave you in debt.
Of course, there are many reasons why a couple’s marriage might not work out — from conflicting personalities to money issues, and even the types of jobs each partner works.
With that in mind, LendingTree used U.S. Census Bureau American Community Survey data to determine what types of jobs and individual occupations have the highest divorce rates.
We found that while a majority of the workforce isn’t recently divorced, there are careers in which workers appear more likely to split from their spouses.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Key findings
- Types of jobs with the highest divorce rates
- Individual occupations with the highest divorce rates
- Tips for financially preparing for a divorce
- The type of job with the highest divorce rate is military work. An estimated 3.09% of workers who were married and had this type of job in 2019 divorced that same year. That’s nearly double the national divorce rate of 1.6%.
- Following military workers, those who have a job in health care support have the next highest divorce rate. Health care support workers (such as medical assistants, home health aides and orderlies) have a divorce rate of 2.65%, while those who work in food preparation and service occupations came in third at 2.49%.
- Drilling down to the 100 most common individual occupations, bartenders top the list with a divorce rate of 4.34%. Waitstaff and home health aides round out the top three with estimated rates of 3.40% and 2.87%, respectively. Interestingly, individual occupations with the highest divorce rate tend to be jobs that may not be traditionally viewed as having status or prestige on an organizational level.
- The jobs with the highest risk of divorce shift when looking individually at female and male workers. Bartenders still top the list for each gender, with divorce rates of 4.58% for women and 3.92% for men. Meanwhile, heating and cooling mechanics and installers slide up to second for women with a divorce rate of 4.41%, and receptionists and clerks land in second for men with a divorce rate of 3.12%.
- For both women and men, the three jobs that are least likely to see those who work them get a divorce are clergy, farmers and ranchers and physicians. The average overall divorce rate across these three jobs is 0.70%.
Types of jobs with the highest divorce rates
No. 1: Military
- Overall divorce rate: 3.09%
- Divorce rate among women: 4.54%
- Divorce rate among men: 2.90%
From accountant to member of the infantry, the types of jobs that people have in the military are incredibly diverse. While it isn’t always the case, careers in the armed forces can be stressful, and the work can take a toll on a marriage. This is especially true of those who are deployed and must risk both their physical and mental well-being while spending months away from their spouses.
Beyond the mental and physical stress, money is another issue that can strain a marriage. As with virtually any type of job, salaries vary quite a bit depending on what a person does and how much experience they have. With that said, many jobs within the military, especially entry-level active duty salaries, don’t pay highly. For example, a private second class — the rank a soldier is given after completing basic training — only brings in a base pay of about $2,055 a month.
These low earnings — combined with the stressful nature of military work — could mean that couples don’t have the energy, financial resources or time to address the problems in their relationship that could eventually lead to divorce.
No. 2: Health care support
- Overall divorce rate: 2.65%
- Divorce rate among women: 2.70%
- Divorce rate among men: 2.25%
Health care support jobs include occupations like home health and personal care aides, nursing assistants, psychiatric aides and physical therapist assistants, to name a few. And though these jobs are unquestionably important and can provide people with great opportunities, there is no getting around how many aspects of this kind of work can put pressure on someone’s marriage.
For instance, someone working in this field generally isn’t likely to earn very much money, considering that the average annual wage across all health care support jobs is only $32,250. Further, they’re probably going to be expected to put up with mentally and physically challenging situations — like caring for a patient who can no longer eat, bathe or use the toilet on their own.
Like military work, this could result in a situation where someone who works in health care support becomes too tired, emotionally burned out and cash-strapped to work toward maintaining their relationship.
No. 3: Food preparation and serving
- Overall divorce rate: 2.49%
- Divorce rate among women: 2.64%
- Divorce rate among men: 2.24%
Odd and erratic hours, as well as a low average annual wage of $27,650, are factors that can make it hard to maintain a marriage for those who have food preparation and serving jobs.
Since substance abuse can increase the likelihood of divorce, the prevalent usage of drugs and alcohol among members of the broader service industry could also contribute to the high rate of divorce among those who work these types of jobs.
Even if a person isn’t abusing drugs or alcohol, the lack of inhibition that being intoxicated can bring about could prompt someone to engage in risky behavior that leads to the end of their relationship — like cheating.
Individual occupations with the highest divorce rates
No. 1: Bartenders
- Overall divorce rate: 4.34%
- Divorce rate among women: 4.58%
- Divorce rate among men: 3.92%
Two aspects of a bartender’s job that could strain a marriage include low pay and the type of hours they often have to work. As is the case with virtually any service industry job, a bartender may be called into work on short notice or required to work long hours, depending on the establishment. On top of that, a bartender may be more likely to work during times that many couples would prefer to spend together, like nights and weekends.
This combination of not having much time to spend with their significant others and the financial difficulties of earning a median salary of only $24,960 a year can easily be difficult obstacles to overcome for many marriages.
No. 2: Waiters and waitresses
- Overall divorce rate: 3.40%
- Divorce rate among women: 3.59%
- Divorce rate among men: 2.69%
There are various reasons why waitstaff may tend to get divorced at higher rates than people who work other jobs. Like bartenders, they often work erratic schedules for a median annual salary of less than $25,000 ($23,740, to be exact). Besides low earnings, high levels of work-related mental stressors like anxiety and depression are also common among waitstaff.
While it’s possible to maintain a marriage while you’re stressed out about work or short on cash, the relatively high divorce rate among waitstaff is evidence that doing so can be difficult.
No. 3: Home health aides
- Overall divorce rate: 2.87%
- Divorce rate among women: 2.90%
- Divorce rate among men: 2.50%
The job of a home health aide can be extremely challenging, and many aspects of it could potentially strain a person’s relationship.
For example, home health aides may need to work with clients that require a great deal of time and attention — attention and time that a spouse may feel is better spent with them.
Beyond that, the low median annual pay of $27,080 that home health aides earn could make it much more difficult for their relationship to weather the job’s time-consuming and mentally draining nature.
Tips for financially preparing for a divorce
Divorce can be a very emotionally difficult time. But if you don’t want to make your situation even more challenging, you’ve got to stay on top of your finances.
Here are three tips on how to do just that:
- Consider using a personal loan to pay for a lawyer and other types of divorce-related expenses. Like marriage, divorce can be expensive. If you’re struggling to pay for common divorce-related bills like lawyer fees or moving costs, consider taking out a personal loan to help. In the middle of a stressful divorce, the last thing you want to do is worry about completely emptying your bank account.
- Remember that bills you’re jointly responsible for don’t just disappear when you decide to end your relationship. Keep track of what bills you and your spouse were jointly responsible for and be sure to hash out who is accountable for paying what as soon as possible. If you don’t, you could risk seriously damaging your credit score or defaulting on a loan.
- Streamline and consolidate your debts to help make paying them off easier on your own. If you’re still reeling from a divorce, it can be difficult to keep track of all the different bills you have to pay. By using a debt consolidation loan, you can not only reduce the number of payments you’ve got to make each month, but you can also potentially get a better rate on your debt and lower the amount of money you’ve got to spend on it.
Analysts used microdata from the U.S. Census Bureau American Community Survey 2019 five-year estimates (latest available) to calculate the number of men and women in each tracked type of job and individual occupation who were married within 12 months of their survey responses and the number who divorced within 12 months of their responses.
The number of married individuals is the sum of people who reported they were married or separated, had been widowed in the last year or had been divorced in the last year. The number of divorced workers doesn’t include those who were married but separated.
The analysis was limited to the 100 individual occupations with the most workers for those rankings. However, all workers were included in the higher-level job type aggregations.
What is the number one occupation for divorce? ›
First-line enlisted military supervisors manage and lead enlisted service members. Their role, however, tends to put a staggering strain on their marriages. Individuals under the age of 30 have a 30% divorce rate, making it the most divorced profession, according to Zippia's research.What profession has the lowest divorce rate? ›
- Media and communication equipment workers, all other at less than 1%
- Agricultural engineers at 1.78%
- Optometrists at 4.01%
- Transit and railroad police at 5.26%
- Clergy at 5.61%
Do Marines have high divorce rates? According to other studies, deployed military members in the U.S. Navy, Marines, Army and Air Force have higher than average divorce rates. The Air Force had the highest rate, at 14.6 percent, with the Navy at over 12.5 percent. The other two branches came in at over 8 percent.What profession has the highest burnout rate? ›
Physicians have the highest burnout rate, with 62.8% experiencing burnout symptoms. Other jobs with high burnout rates include: Nurse. Retail and Fast Food Worker.Who divorces who more often? ›
A 2015 study by the American Sociological Association revealed that women initiate 69 percent of all divorces in the U.S. Further, the same study found that college-educated women initiate divorce at an even higher rate of 90 percent.Who is happiest after divorce? ›
Women fare better than men. A study by Kingston University in the UK found that despite the negative financial impact of divorce on women, they are generally happier than men after divorce.What are the top 2 causes of divorce? ›
- Marital Infidelity. Different couples may respond to marital infidelity in different ways. ...
- Financial Disagreements. ...
- Weight Gain. ...
- Lack of Intimacy. ...
- Lack of Equality. ...
- Lack of Preparation. ...
- Poor Communication. ...
- 7 professions that make the Best Husbands. Yes! Profession compatibility is a thing. ...
- Engineers. Engineers are dedicated individuals who like to make long term commitments about their future. ...
- Physicians. You can bet on financial stability with his one. ...
- Chef. The way to a woman's heart is through her stomach.
As a culture, we tend to assume that women are more emotional than men. However, numerous studies have shown that divorce is actually an experience that is tougher for men to cope with.What age is divorce most common? ›
The average age for couples going through their first divorce is 30 years old. 24. 60 percent of all divorces involve individuals aged 25 to 39.
Why is military divorce rate so high? ›
The difficult adjustment of reconnecting as a couple after having been used to being apart, coupled with other issues such as money, affairs, children, alcohol and physical abuse all increase the chance of divorce for military personnel. Overall, the combined divorce rate for the U.S. military is 3.7%.What are the top 3 causes of divorce in the US? ›
According to a recent survey of 191 CDFA professionals from across North America, the three leading causes of divorce are "basic incompatibility" (43%), "infidelity" (28%), and "money issues" (22%).What are the top 3 most stressful jobs? ›
- Anesthesiologist assistants.
- Judges, magistrate judges, and magistrates.
- Telephone operators.
- Acute care nurses.
- Obstetricians and gynecologists.
- Public safety telecommunicators (911 operators)
- First-line supervisors and retail sales workers.
- Nurse anesthetists.
- Social/support worker.
- Police officers.
- Health care professional.
- Prison officer.
- How to deal with stress at work.
- Nurse. The median salary for registered nurses in the U.S. is under $80,000. ...
- Teacher. ...
- Construction worker. ...
- Social worker. ...
- Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) ...
- Surgeon. ...
- Retail employee. ...
- Certified public accountant (CPAs)
- Infidelity. Cheating on your spouse not only breaks a vow—it breaks the trust in a relationship. ...
- Lack of Intimacy. Physical intimacy is important in any romantic relationship, but it is essential to the growth of a long-term relationship. ...
- Communication. ...
- Money. ...
countable noun. A divorcée is a woman who is divorced.How long does the average marriage last? ›
What is the average length of marriage? On average, the length of a marriage in the U.S. is seven to eight years. Some states have a higher rate than others, but the divorce rate for the country is around 50%.What is the most mentally draining job? ›
- Mental health counsellor. ...
- Anesthesiologist. ...
- Patrol officer. ...
- IT manager. ...
- Construction manager. ...
- Physician. ...
- Lawyer. ...
- Financial manager.
Agriculture, logging and forestry have the highest levels of self-reported happiness — and lowest levels of self-reported stress — of any major industry category, according to our analysis of thousands of time journals from the Bureau of Labor Statistics' American Time Use Survey.
Which job has the most mental health issues? ›
- Emergency medical technicians (EMTs)
- Construction workers.
- Childcare workers.
- Restaurant workers.
- Humanitarian workers.
Men Are More Likely to Remarry
The rate for women was significantly lower, at only 19.4 per 1,000 women eligible for remarriage. This data indicates that men are consistently more likely to attempt a second marriage than women. Over the past decade, there has been a decline in remarriage rates for both men and women.
On average, a third of divorced couples regret their decision to end their marriage. In a 2016 survey by Avvo.com, researchers interviewed 254 women and 206 men and asked how they felt about their divorce. They found out that 27% of women and 32% of men found themselves regretting divorce.What percentage of divorced couples get back together? ›
According to the research, between 10-15% of couples reconcile after they separate. However, only about 6% of couples marry each other again after they divorce. Of those who remarry each other, about 30% go on to divorce each other a second time.What are the hardest years of marriage? ›
While there are countless divorce studies with conflicting statistics, the data points to two periods during a marriage when divorces are most common: years 1 – 2 and years 5 – 8. Of those two high-risk periods, there are two years in particular that stand out as the most common years for divorce — years 7 and 8.What ends most marriages? ›
- Infidelity. Over half of all participants cited infidelity as a major reason for divorce and infidelity was the most often endorsed “final straw” reason. ...
- Substance abuse. ...
- Domestic violence. ...
- Financial hardship. ...
- Marriage expectations.
Sexless marriage and divorce rates
According to some data, the divorce rate is around 50%.
According to the men we talked to, women who make it to the perfect 'wife material' list fall under 'nurturing' careers such as nursing, teaching, farming, small-scale business women, secretaries and housewives.Who do doctors usually marry? ›
Female physicians and surgeons are most likely to marry male or female physicians and surgeons. Male physicians and surgeons are most likely to marry female physicians and surgeons or male registered nurses.Who do teachers usually marry? ›
Female elementary-school teachers are most likely to marry male elementary- and middle-school teachers. Male elementary-school teachers are most likely to marry female elementary- and middle-school teachers. Female editors are most likely to marry male general managers.
At what age is divorce hardest? ›
Elementary school age (6–12) This is arguably the toughest age for children to deal with the separation or divorce of their parents.Who is happier single or married? ›
Indeed, married people are happier than unmarried people: across nearly five decades of surveys, data from the GSS shows that 36% of people who have ever been married (including divorced, separated, and widowed people) say they are “very happy” while just 11% are “not too happy,” compared to 22% and 15% for people who ...Who hurts the most after divorce? ›
Men are more than twice as likely to suffer from post-divorce depression than women. Anxiety and hypertension are common in men after divorce, which can result in substance abuse and in the worst cases, suicide.Why is GREY divorce? ›
Gray (or grey) divorce refers to a divorce involving individuals who are 50 years of age or older. Many high-profile cases, such as Bill and Melinda Gates, Billy Ray and Tish Cyrus, and Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver, have brought attention to the growing number of gray divorces.What is the best age to get married to avoid divorce? ›
“The ideal age to get married, with the least likelihood of divorce in the first five years, is 28 to 32,” says Carrie Krawiec, a marriage and family therapist at Birmingham Maple Clinic in Troy, Michigan. “Called the 'Goldilocks theory,' the idea is that people at this age are not too old and not too young.”What month do most divorces occur? ›
Which Months Do Divorce Filings Peak? Divorce rates peak in March and August. There are a number of reasons these two months see a large increase in divorce and separation. People are less likely to divorce during the winter holidays since these events revolve around time spent with family.Is divorce more common with the rich or poor? ›
Wealthy couples have higher odds of divorce because more money translates to more stress in a committed relationship. A 2018 study by Northwestern Mutual found that a person's relationship with money increases his or her chances of divorce.Who lives longer married or single? ›
Results show that the people who lived the longest were those who stayed single and those who stayed married. Those who divorced, including those who divorced and remarried, had shorter lives. What mattered was consistency, not marital status, and there were no sex differences.Which marriage is more likely to end in divorce? ›
After all, almost 50% of first marriages, 60% of second marriages, and 73% of third marriages end in divorce. While there are countless divorce studies with conflicting statistics, the data points to two periods during a marriage when divorces are most common: years 1 – 2 and years 5 – 8.Who initiates divorce more? ›
A study led by the American Sociological Association determined that nearly 70% of divorces are initiated by women. And the percentage of college-educated American women who initiated divorce is even higher.
Are most people happier after divorce? ›
The study found that on average unhappily married adults who divorced were no happier than unhappily married adults who stayed married when rated on any of 12 separate measures of psychological well-being. Divorce did not typically reduce symptoms of depression, raise self-esteem, or increase a sense of mastery.Which social class is more likely to divorce? ›
Divorce is also more common among working-class and poor adults age 18–55, provided that they have married in the first place. Figure 5 shows that less than one-third of ever-married middle- and upper-class men and women have ever been divorced.Which gender is happier in marriage? ›
Hu found that reported happiness was higher overall among married people than unmarried people. By gender, 56.2 percent of married men said they were “very happy,” compared with only 39.4 percent of unmarried men who said so. Among women, the figure dropped to 44.9 percent and 35.4 percent respectively.Who benefits most from marriage? ›
Both men and women benefit from marriage, but men seem to benefit more overall.Who are the happiest people single or married? ›
Indeed, married people are happier than unmarried people: across nearly five decades of surveys, data from the GSS shows that 36% of people who have ever been married (including divorced, separated, and widowed people) say they are “very happy” while just 11% are “not too happy,” compared to 22% and 15% for people who ...Who gets divorced the least? ›
The least likely professionals to get divorced are: Actuaries: 17% Physical scientists: 18.9%What is the most common age for divorce? ›
The average age for people going through a divorce for the first time is 30 years old. According to a recent report, more than half, or 60%, of divorces involve spouses who are between the ages of 25 and 39. However, while 30 is the average age, the divorce rate for people over 50 has doubled since 1990.