“…Millions of American families may now be in the initial stage of their responses to the current crisis, working together and supporting one another through the early months of unemployment. During the Depression this stage seemed to last a year at most. Today, it might last longer. Wives now share with their husbands the burden of earning money, and the government provides more assistance. But history suggests that this response will be temporary. By 1940 the divorce rate was higher than before the Depression, as if a pent-up demand was finally being satisfied. The Depression destroyed the inner life of many married couples, but it was years before they could afford to file for divorce. Today’s economic slump could well generate a similar backlog of couples whose relationships have been irreparably ruined. So it is only when the economy is healthy again that we will begin to see just how many fractured families have been created…” from Married with Bankruptcy.
Bad financial times aside, it’s amazing to me that the institution of marriage–something that by it’s very nature is bankrupt (as in the joke “till death do you part”–is still alive, that a lot of people will still spend thousands of dollars on something that is most likely bound to fail, either in outright terms (divorce or murder) or hellish coexistence ( as in for the sake of the children or financial dependency). Before you say “I Do” just remember what Andy Warhol might have said, “Everybody will be married for fifteen minutes.”