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People Suffering from Mental Disorders Have Higher Divorce Rate

Posted on January 26, 2015 in Divorce

mental healthThere are many reasons which cause people to make the decision to file for divorce. Sadly, one of those reasons is when the other spouse suffers from mental illness. Studies have shown that people who suffer from mental illness have a higher rate of divorce. One study that was conducted in 2011 actually put that divorce rate increase at between 20 to 80 percent.

The multi-national study was conducted by the National Center for Biotechnology Information. The researchers found 18 different mental disorders which not only had an effect on whether or not a person dealing with one or more of those disorders stayed married, but also affected whether or not they married in the first place.

The mental disorders which had the largest impact on divorce rates were alcohol abuse, major depression, and specific phobia, such as post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD).

It can be difficult living and interacting with a spouse who is suffering from major depression, especially when they withdraw from family and friends. There may also be incidents of angry outburst to contend with. When one spouse is suffering from depression, the other spouse is often forced to take on additional parental and family responsibilities that would normally be shared between the two.

Bipolar disorder can also impact a couple’s ability to sustain a happy marriage, with the couple struggling with the sufferer’s depressive episodes and then having to deal with the crisis brought on by his or her manic episodes – such as infidelity or excessive spending.

Alcohol abuse – or other substance abuse addictions - can also tear a marriage apart. One of the hardest parts of dealing with someone struggling with addictions is that they often blame everyone else for their problems. This can wreak havoc on a marriage.

Mental health workers suggest that if you are dealing with a spouse who is suffering from a mental illness and are considering a divorce, you should ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is the illness my spouse is suffering treatable and are they willing to go for that treatment?
  • Am I willing to stay in this marriage if my spouse does not seek treatment?
  • How much are the children or other family members suffering from this situation?
  • Is my spouse’s condition stable or is it just going to worsen as time goes on?
  • Is there a support group or network available to me?

If you are considering a divorce, contact an experienced Arlington Heights divorce attorney to find out what legal options you may have in what could be a very difficult divorce.

Illinois State Bar Association DuPage County Bar Association Northwest Suburban Bar Association American Inns of Court DuPage Association of Woman Lawyers National Association of Woman Business Owners Illinois Association Criminal Defense Lawyers DuPage County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
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