Is it possible that divorce could be contagious? Researchers at Brown University set out to find out in a study of thousands of people over three decades. They found that if a friend is getting divorced, it increases one's chances by 75% of getting a divorce. The number drops to 33% if a friend of a friend is going through a divorce. While I am a firm believer that you are the sum total of the five people you hang out with the most (lesson: don't hang out with losers and whiners), I am somewhat skeptical of these findings. I do wonder the effect on one's marriage of being a divorce lawyer. But I digress. How could it be that a friend's divorce will rub off on you? My own belief is that the seed for divorce is likely in the brain of these people already, and seeing their friend go through it gives one strength to do what is probably inevitable anyway. Sort of like when my best friend goes on a diet. I probaly didn't want to start my diet yet but figure it will be easier with a friend. Maybe divorce is like that too. What I do know, having helped thousands of people in divorce, is that it is a hard road to go down (but not necessarily without rewards). Having someone to talk to always helps because as dark as it may seem at times, there is light at the end of the tunnel.
If you are thinking about getting divorce (with or without a friend!), be sure to get a free copy of my book for residents of Illinois. It provides a ton of useful information if this is something that you are considering. Or call us at 630 250-8813 to set up a confidential consultation to discuss your options.