The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

Till Divorce, Not Death, Do Us Part

2 min read


News of the recent divorce of reality TV star Kim Kardashian and NBA player Kris Humphries was met with media frenzy. Only 72 days of marriage and the mess of their separation followed their extravagant $10 million wedding and divorce is ongoing. While it is typical for Hollywood marriages to be short-lived, this one has inspired all sorts of criticism about the sanctity of marriage and the frequency of divorce in the United States.

According to, the national divorce rate for a first marriage is resting at about 41 percent, but after you get divorced once the numbers only get higher should you re-marry. Sixty-seven percent of second marriages and 74 percent of third marriages end in divorce.

When a couple gets engaged, it supposed to be one of the happiest times in their life. Preoccupied with wedding plans, seating charts, wardrobe and venue choices much attention is paid to the wedding; but these statistics would suggest that little attention is paid to the relationship. The wedding is only a day, the relationship is supposed to last a lifetime, but often the hustle and bustle over the wedding day takes precedent over the hard questions you should be considering during this time.

Who wants to discuss the possibility of ending a marriage you haven’t even started? When planning to get married no one wants to talk about divorce. Many couples think they are invincible, that it can’t happen to them. However, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, “the proportion of Americans who are currently married has been diminishing for decades and is lower than it has been in at least half a century.”

The days where you once got married, and stayed married “till death do us part” are over.

If you are planning to get married, a discussion about the possibility of divorce, as awkward as it may be, needs to be one you have with your partner. Divorce is a huge problem, not just for the individuals involved, but for any family, children or expensive property that may get caught up in the tangled mess of court proceedings. Getting married is not a decision to be made quickly, and marriage is not an institution to be taken lightly. If you are going to say the words “till death do us part,” you should mean it.