Divorce detrimental to health of younger lot

January 31st, 2012 - 3:32 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Jan 31 (IANS) Divorce at a younger age is more detrimental to one’s health than later in life as older people can cope better with the ensuing disruption and stress.

Michigan State University sociologist Hui Liu, who led the study said “that we need more social and family support for the younger divorced groups.”

“This could include divorce counselling to help people handle the stress, or offering marital therapy or prevention programs to maintain marital satisfaction,” added Hui, the journal Social Science & Medicine reports.

Hui analyzed the self-reported health of 1,282 participants in Americans’ Changing Lives, a long-term national survey,
according to a Michigan statement.

She measured the gap in health status between those who remained married during the 15-year study period and those who transitioned from marriage to divorce, at certain ages and among different birth cohorts, or generations.

Hui found the gap was wider at younger ages. For example, among people born in the 1950s, those who got divorced between the ages of 35 and 41 reported more health problems in relation to their continuously married counterparts than those who got divorced in the 44 to 50 age range.

From a generational perspective, the negative health impact was stronger for baby boomers than it was for older generations - a finding that surprised Hui.

“I would have expected divorce to carry less stress for the younger generation, since divorce is more prevalent for
them,” she said.

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