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    Wednesday, April 20, 2011

    Happy Anniversary

    Thirty two years ago today my parents were married. As all of us married-folk know, marriage is a journey and an experience fraught with ups and downs, elation and depression, wonder, excitement, boredom, and contentment.

    It is a testament to my parents' tenacity, strength, moral character, and love that they have made 32 years. The divorce rate in the USA is about half of the marriage rate (3.5 per 1000 people to 6.8 per 1000). And the probability of divorce is staggering.

    "The probability of a first marriage ending in separation or divorce within 5 years is 20 percent, ... [and] After 10 years, the probability of a first marriage ending is 33 percent." (Cohabitation, Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage in the United States. Series Report 23, Number 22. 103pp.
    (PHS) 98-1998.)

    Most sources quote the average length of marriage to be 7-10 years. So my parents have tripled this, and AND beat the 33% divorce probability at 10 years.

    Wikipedia gives us this wonderful graphic about marriage and divorce:

    This shows us that my parents chose a great state to live in for their marriage. Texas and east of the Mississippi river have a high proportion of counties with married couples. Conversely, the West Coast is dark blue - divorce! On the other hand, Texas is not the Southeast USA, whose inhabitants clearly have breakup issues, because they are the ONLY part of the country with high separation rates (yet low divorce rates). AND Houston somehow misses the high widow rates of Texas and the Eastern USA (the reason why both my parents are still around!).

    And so I say "Congratulations!!" May you enjoy another 32 great years. In honor of your example and accomplishments, I leave you this gift, from one of my wife and my favorite relationship movies:

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