broken family

9 Risk Factors for Marital Problems

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on print
Share on email

A study published in the Journal of Marriage and Family focused on why marriages of adult children of divorce are more likely to end in divorce than marriages between partners from intact families. Research was geared towards the attitude of the women who came from divorced families. The study found that “compared with women from intact families, women from divorced families reported ambivalence about becoming involved….and more conflict and negativity in their relationships…” Researchers reported that women from broken homes were less likely to trust their partners and that this would lead to much greater difficulty in marriage.

Knowing this will make you realize if your spouse comes from a broken family, you may need to have greater sensitivity to issues such as trust and security. The more you communicate with her, and the more accountable you are – the less stressed she will be. And never, ever lie to her. When we know the risk factor that can apply to marital problems we can take steps to deal with them effectively. Here are 9 factors that may be putting your marriage at risk.

[ctt template=”12″ link=”k25ea” via=”no” ]The more you communicate with her, and the more accountable you are – the less stressed she will be. [/ctt]

Static Risk Factors

  1. Having a personality tendency to react strongly or defensively to problems and disappointments in life
  2. Having divorced parents
  3. Living together prior to marriage
  4. Being previously divorced, yourself or your partner
  5. Having children from a previous marriage
  6. Having different religious backgrounds
  7. Marrying at a very young age
  8. Knowing each other for only a short time before marriage
  9. Experiencing financial hardship

There is something very important about this list that we’d like you to notice: once a couple is married, they can do nothing to directly lower any of these risks. In our academic publications, we call these factors static because they are relatively unchangeable. Reflecting on these factors can be useful in understanding how much risk the two of you may have, but there is little you can do to change any of these and certainly not quickly.

In contrast to the static factors shown in the preceding list, there are risk factors that relate more directly to how you treat one another, how you communicate, and how you think about your relationship. We call these dynamic risk factors because, although they do increase the risk that a couple won’t do well, they can all be changed with some thought and choice and effort. Reducing dynamic risk factors will help you conquer the static risk factors.

Dynamic Risk Factors

  • Negative styles of talking and fighting with each other, such as arguments that rapidly become negative, put-downs, and the silent treatment
  • Difficulty communicating well, especially when you disagree
  • Trouble handling disagreements as a team
  • Unrealistic beliefs about marriage
  • Different attitudes about important things
  • A low level of commitment to one another, reflected in such behavior as failing to protect your relationship from others you are attracted to or failing to view your marriage as a long-term investment
  • Not practicing faith together