According to the Center for Disease Control, the marriage rate per 1000 in population is currently at 6.8, whereas the divorce rate per 1000 in population is 3.4.
It is commonly stated that in the US, half of the marriages are ending in divorces.
In recent years, the divorce rate among baby boomers has nearly doubled, according to the National Center for Family and Marriage Research at Bowling Green State University. This trend has even earned its own name: grey divorce, which describes divorcing later in life.
Asia, Europe and the Middle Eastern countries have seen rising trends of divorce as well. In Hong Kong, the number of single parents has risen 30% in the last 10 years. In Dubai, the high divorce rate has its Ministry of Social Affairs investigating into the reasons behind Emirati couples divorcing.
If these trends continue, it is likely that marriages which last would become more of a rarity than marriages which break up.
Hellen Chen is a matchmaker extraordinaire who has dealt with men and women who have given up on relationships because of past failures.
She is lovingly called “the Matchmaker of the Century” by the people she has helped because of her tenacity in not giving up working with men and women of all ages until they find the right partner. What made her even more special is that she does not stop at the matchmaking part but continues to help couples make their relationship last.
Her book “The Matchmaker of the Century” which is about her matchmaking experiences has become a number one bestselling in relationship books on Barnes and Noble.
Being married for more than 20 years herself, Chen said that contrary to beliefs, making a marriage last is not about compromising or forgiving another’s shortcomings or being submissive. One could truly still have one’s own space while letting one’s partner have his or her own space.
“There are many Do’s and Don’ts marriage rules being talked about in marriage literature. But actually, too many rules will stress the relationship out even more and aid the breakup.” said Chen.
What are some of the ‘rules’ which are not necessary to make a relationship last?
“For example, some couples quarrel over celebration of holidays like Valentine’s Day. One wants to be romantic. And the other one has no desire to do so. Who says that no celebration means there is no love?” said Chen.
A couple whom Chen has counseled, Lily and Jeff, have been quarreling over their difference in habits and what they like to do together.
After getting Chen’s advice, wife Lily realized, “I have thought about ‘doing things together’ as the most important part as a couple. But when Jeff does not wish to go with me to do, for example, shopping, I see him as uncaring. But that is wrong thinking. He simply does not care for certain activities which I like, but there is nothing wrong about the love he has for me.”
Chen said, “My own husband likes to go out into the sun. I prefer to stay indoors. His eating habits are very different than mine. So what is the rule? No rule. We do what we each like. And still find plenty of ways to love each other.”
“There is no rule in love.” said Chen.
How about the common “must-have’s” when looking for a marital partner? For example, looks and money have been at the top of many singles’ lists of criteria. Chemistry is another major one except that looking at the rising divorce trends, chemistry in the beginning is no guarantee that the chemistry would last all the way till the very end.
Chen chimed in on this phenomenon of having to have absolutely the right person that could fit self.
“Dating websites are filled with match seekers listing out their criteria for their Mr. or Miss Right. But if those criteria are so known and followed, why is the divorce rate not going down? Why does the past generation, who does not have access to listings and criteria, do better in making their marriage last?” Chen asked.
In view of the upcoming July 4th celebration, one popular quote by John F Kennedy might apply to marriage in this case.
“The key point is this: ask not what the other partner could do for you, ask what you could do for your partner and ask how you could improve yourself at the same time.” Chen smiled.
Chen’s insights on relationships have been quoted on over 200 media publications and radio and TV interviews, in 17 countries, including United States.
She has conducted thousands of lectures which also include love workshops to help singles start their relationship right and also help couples to learn how to love deeper, and also how to salvage relationships before heading to the divorce courts.
Her interviews could be found on http://MatchmakerOfTheCentury.com