Report examines Canadian divorce rates, impact of divorce on children

Today’s post will take a closer look at a recent report that examined both the impact of divorce on children and the divorce rate north of the border, meaning Canada, not Oklahoma.

The report, published by the Vanier Institute of the Family, found that the divorce rate in Canada is actually much lower than most people think. Specifically, half of all Canadian marriages do not end in divorce.

According to 2008 data from Statistics Canada, roughly 38 percent of Canadian couples secured a divorce by the time of their 30th wedding anniversary.

Anne-Marie Ambert, author of the reports and a sociology professor at York University in Toronto, indicated that the pervasive myth of the 50 percent divorce rate can likely be attributed to two factors. First, misunderstanding/lack of agreement on how to calculate divorce rates and, second, the continuing dominance of U.S. divorce figures from the 1980s in the popular press.

Canadian divorces reached their official zenith in 1987 (362 divorces per 100,000 people) and began a slow decline over the next 20 years (currently at 221 divorces per 100,000 people).

Ambert’s report also examined the impact of divorce on Canadian children and determined that while they are not at an increased risk of developmental disorders, they are at an increased risk of anxiety, depression, poor academic performance, relationship troubles and even criminal behavior.

“What we’re not talking about is the impact of parent conflict after the divorce and while they’re separated,” said Ambert. “It’s what happens after – when the parents bicker over everything, over every cent, over every visit, and the kids are placed in the middle of that – that is bound to be very bad.”

Fortunately, Ambert indicated that more children are recognizing that they don’t have to go through the divorce process alone and are now finding comfort talking with other children of divorce.

In addition, it appears as if the children of Canadian divorce – many of whom could potentially be jaded toward marriage – actually have rather positive attitudes.

To illustrate, a survey by Reginald Bibby, a sociology professor at Alberta University and author of an extensive survey on Canadian teenagers, discovered that 88 percent of teens expected to remain with their partner for life and only 40 percent approved of divorce.

Stay tuned for more from our Ft. Worth family law blog …

To learn more about dissolution of marriage or child custody, contact an experienced and skilled legal professional.

This post is for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice.

Related Resources:

Divorce rate in Canada lower than previously thought (The North Shore News)