Individual Counseling, Couples Counseling and Sex Therapy

Recession and Divorce

According to a 2010 survey conducted by the Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts, the recession appears to have affected the divorce rate in some interesting ways.

Thirty-eight percent of analysts report a decrease in the number of divorce cases they handle, with 25% reporting an increase.

Common reasons for the increase:

  • desire to reduce the cost of their divorce (most common)
  • economic climate is straining marriages
  • people exploring options prior to hiring an attorney

Common reasons for the decrease:

  • people are afraid to divorce while unemployed
  • people cannot afford to live apart
  • people cannot afford to divorce until economy improves
  • not enough money to hire a financial expert

The housing market has also affected the behavior of splitting couples.  Because it is more difficult to sell their homes, people are coming up with creative solutions:

  • both stay in house and live in separate rooms (most common solution)
  • renting house to third party
  • renting apartment, and taking turns staying in apartment (kids stay in house)
  • one stays in house and pays rent until market improves

What does all this mean?  The general trend appears to be that couples are staying together longer; whether they are postponing divorce, or simply forced to continue living together due to finances and the housing market.  Either way, couples could benefit from learning to communicate better, get a long better, and understand each other more.  Couples therapy can help with all of that.

Couples therapy isn’t just for couples who want to stay together.  Having an objective third party present can help couples learn how to communicate better and diffuse tension.  Couples often have “blind spots”, things one or both partners cannot see because of past hurts or resentments.  A couples counselor can gently point them out, to help the person gain a greater perspective on the situation.

As an experienced couples counselors, I have helped many couples communicate more effectively.  Clients have reported that their relationship improved even though they ultimately decided to split up.  An improved relationship can mean a less acrimonious split.  So why not call and make an appointment today?

Barbara LoFrisco, LMHC

(813) 404-9215

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