Fewer visits to Splitsville: corona didn’t increase divorce rate

Photo: Depositphotos.com
Photo: Depositphotos.com

Social distancing may have separated society but it didn’t cause more couples to split, according to a new analysis by the national statistics office CBS.

The divorce rate in the Netherlands has been declining for nearly a decade and there was no uptick in marriage breakups in the wake of lockdowns and curfews. Some 25,000 couples divorced in 2021, about eight divorces per 1,000 marriages. The number has not been this low since 1980.

Some of the decrease is due to the aging population, the CBS said. The longer a couple has been together, the less likely they are to divorce. Additionally, fewer couples are getting married in the first place.

The research also showed that an increasing number of parents are unmarried when their first child is born. In 1998, 85 percent of new parents were married. By 2016, that number had fallen to 54%, though a further 7% had a registered partnership and 38% were living together.

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