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Serious illness can increase chance of divorce for wives

People decide to divorce for a number of reasons. One reason for divorce that some might not think of right away is illness. Despite the vows "in sickness and in health," many Florida couples find the strain of one partner having a serious illness to be too much to contend with, and so their marriage ends. However, researchers have discovered that the risk of divorce resulting from illness is much higher when the ill spouse is the wife.

Researchers at two out-of-state universities conducted a study of about 2,700 marriages. They wanted to see if certain health conditions had any impact on a marriage's longevity, looking at cancer, heart problems, lung disease and stroke in their research. They found that when a wife suffers from heart problems or stroke, it can increase the likelihood that she will get divorced. They did not see a similar effect for husbands. Other research has even indicated that men see a great deal of health benefits from marriage, since wives often give them care and support.

Experts admit that these findings seem to only apply to marriages that follow traditional gender roles. Men in those kinds of marriages may be used to women conducting the bulk of the housework and child-rearing. They may even rely solely on their wives for support, whereas women often have other support systems with extended family and friends. If a wife in that kind of marriage develops a serious illness and is unable to provide what she used to, many men may decide to remarry -- an option that men seem to be able to exercise more than women. None of this is to say that all hope is lost for wives who suffer a serious illness -- the researchers say that the overall strength of the marriage is a major factor.

For anyone here in Florida who is considering a divorce for any reason, the best course of action may be to consult a seasoned divorce attorney. He or she can best advise an individual of their rights and responsibilities during the divorce process. It may be the first step to a brand new life.

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