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US Statistics
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(Sources: U.S. Census Bureau, National Center for Health Statistics, Americans for Divorce Reform, Institue for Equality in Marriage, American Association for Single People, Ameristat, Public Agenda)
Marriage & Divorce:
Total divorces granted: 1,163,000
Rate per 1,000 population (1999):
(excluding CA, CO, IN and LA)
4.1
State with the lowest divorce rate: Massachusetts. Rate per 1,000 population: 2.4
State with the higest divorce rate: Nevada. Rate per 1,000 population: 9.0
Current number of divorced adults (1998): 19,400,000 (9.8%)
Median age at divorce: Males: 35.6
Females: 33.2
Median duration of marriage: 7.2 years
Likelihood of new marriages ending in divorce: 43%
Percentage of all householders who are unmarried (2000): 48%
Percentage of weddings which are remarriages for at least one partner: 43%
Percentage of first marriages that end in divorce: 50%
Percentage of remarriages that end in divorce: 60%
Estimated average cost of divorce: $15,000
Estimated average length of divorce proceedings: 1 year
Adults married and living with one another in 1998: 110.6 million (56%)
Adults between 25 and 34 years old never married in 1998: 14 million (35%)
Percentage of African American adults in this age group never married in 1998: 53%
Percentage of women 65 years old and over who were widows in 1998: 45%
Percentage of elderly widows living alone in 1998: 70%
Percentage of households occupied by one person in 2000: 26%
Percentage of population (by area of US) who had never married in 1999:

Midwest: 28%
Northeast: 28%
South: 26%
West: 29%

People (by gender) who had never married in 1998: Males: 58,633,000 (58% of men)
Females: 59,333,000 (55% of women)
People who were married in 1998: Males: 31,591,000 (31% of men)
Females: 26,713,000 (25% of women)
People who had been widowed in 1998: Males: 2,569,000 (2% of men)
Females:11,029,000 (10% of women)
People who were divorced in 1998: Males: 8,331,000 (8%)
Females: 11,093,000 (10%)
Median age at first marriage in 1998: Males: 26.7
Females: 25
Average age at first divorce: Males: 35
Females: 33
Average age of those divorcing from their second marriages: Males: 42
Females: 39
Interracial married couples in 1998: 1,348,000
Average age of marriage: Males: 28.7
Females: 25.9
Number of cohabiting couples in 1998: 4.2 million
Number of people divorcing each year: 2.5 million
Average length of first marriages which end in divorce: 11 years
Drop in standard of living of females after divorce, as of 2000: 45%
Number of women who are stalked by a husband or ex-husband every year: 380,000

Number of men who are stalked by a wife or ex-wife every year:

52,000
People aged 25 to 39 make up 60% of all divorces, as of 1993.

To download a PDF file from the National Center for Health Statistics listing the number of marriages and divorces state-by-state, click here.

Click here for a state-by-state ranking of divorce rates.
Children/Single parents:
Number of children in new divorces each year: 1 million
Percentage of parents who had never married in 1998: Males: 35%
Females: 42%
Percentage of households which were family households in 1998: 69%
Percentage of family households containing children under 18 in 1998: 49%
Percentage of married householders with kids in 2000: 24%
Percentage of family households with children with only one parent in 1998: 27%
Percentage of all households run by single moms in 1999: 9%
Number of adults living in a home maintained by one or both parents in 1998: 22 million
Number of single parents in 1998: Males: 2.1 million (5% of parent-child families)
Females: 9.8 million
Estimated number of children involved in divorce: 1,075,000
Rate per 1,000 population children under 18 involved in divorce: 16.8
Children under 18 years of age living with just one parent in 1998: 20 million (28%)
Percentage of children in single-parent homes living with their mother in 1998: 84%
Percentage of children living with single parents for whom no other adults were present in the household in 1998: 56%
Children under 18 living in the household of their grandparents in 1998: 4 million (6%)
Total families in which the child lived with two parents: 25.6 million
Total single fathers maintaining their own household: 1.68 million
Total single fathers living in the home of a relative: 240,000
Total single fathers who were divorced: 920,000
Total single fathers who had never married: 640,000
Total single fathers who were separated: 260,000
Total single fathers raising one child: 1,220,000
Total single fathers raising three or more children: 200,000
Percentage of children (by race) living in two-parent households in 1998: White: 74%
Black: 36%
Hispanic: 64%
Percentage of children living with one parent who lived with a divorced parent: 38%
Percentage of children living with one parent who lived with a never-married parent: 35%
Percentage of children living with one parent who lived with a separated parent: 19%
Percentage of children living with one parent who lived with a widowed parent: 4%
Percentage of children living with one parent whose spouse lived elsewhere because of business or some other reason: 4%
Percentage of children in two-parent households whose parents were college graduates in 1998: 29%
Percentage of children in single-parent households whose parents were college graduates in 1998: 9%
Percentage of children with single parents (by gender) earning under $12,500 in 1998: Living with fathers: 17%
Living with mothers: 41%
Single-parent children living in metropolitan areas: 14.5 million
Single-parent children living in cities with populations of 1 million or more: 9.2 million
Percentage of births which were to unmarried women: 32%
Percentage of same-sex female householders with kids in 1998: 17%
For US Census Bureau data on child support for custodial parents, please click here.
In 1996, children of divorce were 50% more likely than their counterparts from intact families to divorce.
In 19 states reporting custody: 72% of custody were awarded to the wife, 9% were awarded to the husband. In 16% joint custody was awarded. Parents who are awarded and receive child support have higher incomes.
Fatherless homes account for 63% of youth suicides, 90% of homeless/runaway children, 85% of children with behavior problems, 71% of high school dropouts, 85% of youths in prison, well over 50% of teen mothers.
Miscellaneous:
Women earning more than their husbands in 1998: 10.5 million
Percentage of smokers who had been divorced: 49%
Percentage of nonsmokers who had been divorced: 32%
Percentage of divorces due to economic problems: 4.2%
Percentage of divorces due to irreconcilable differences: 80%