Friday, November 27, 2009

Divorce Rate Up .2% for military with Country's 9th Year at War more women in military divorce

I don't normally cross post, but I thought this post that I wrote on Glass City Jungle this morning might interest some of the readership here as well...

I saw this headline on WTOL then did some further searching to see if additional information was reported. The basics:

WASHINGTON (AP) - The divorce rate in the armed forces increased slightly again in the past year as military marriages continued to bear the stress of the nation's ninth year at war.

The Pentagon says that in the budget year that ended Sept. 30, there were an estimated 27,312 divorces among the nearly 765,000 married members of the active-duty Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps.

That's a divorce rate of about 3.6 percent, compared with 3.4 percent a year earlier.

An increase of .2% doesn't seem high, until you compare it with this information reported by CBS News:
Friday's reported 3.6 percent rate is a full percentage point above the 2.6 percent reported in 2001, just as the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on America propelled the United States into the war in Afghanistan.

"The force is under tremendous stress, and that stress finds its way into marriages," said Joe Davis, spokesman for the organization Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Yet, as CBS News also points out:
There's no comparable annual system for tracking the national or civilian divorce rate, though the Centers for Disease Control said in 2005 that 43 percent of all first marriages end in divorce within 10 years.

This additional link was interesting, it doesn't have the numbers for 2009, but in 2006, 2007 and 2008 female members of the military experienced more divorces than their male counterparts, by quite a bit higher of a percentage...That made me wonder as to why that is. It would be interesting to learn who actually filed for divorce, was it the female military members or their husbands at home versus was it the wives at home who filed or the husband's at war...this article, while not recent offers some speculation:
Benjamen Karney, lead researcher for the Rand Corp., which studied divorce in the military from 1996 through 2005, said there haven't been any studies on the military divorce rate for women. "It wasn't until my report came out in 2007 about divorce in the military that we learned that divorce in the military was substantially higher among females than males.This has been true for more than the last decade even when there was no war going on."

Karney said there is speculation, however. "One thought is that support services available for military families are geared for supporting civilian wives of male servicemen," he said. "Another possibility is that women who are service members are different than men in the military in important ways. It has been said that the military recruits the most traditional men in our society. But the military recruits the least traditional females in our society. They are not the women who are most invested in the general role assigned to women. A third possibility is that it may be more stressful to be a civilian husband of a military wife than it is to be a civilian wife of a military husband. We don't know the answers. But we recommend there needs to be more research done on women in the military."

1 comment:

Emperor said...

This doesnt account for Guard Families or breakups among long standing couples. My fiance and I broke up in the middle of my deploymet...its actually a common tale. I wish it wasn't.

Such is life.