In a first-of-its-kind report released by the Census Bureau titled Marital Events of Americans: 2009, an analysis was conducted around marriage, divorce and widowhood in the United States. The data revealed some rather unexpected trends around marriage rates, divorce rates and geography.
Nationally, 19.1 weddings occurred per every 1,000 men and 17.6 per every 1,000 women. The divorce rate was 9.2 per 1,000 men and 9.7 per 1,000 women. Perhaps surprisingly to some, the South, which also has one of the highest rates of marriage in the United States, leads the country in divorces. The divorce rate in the South was 10.2 for men and 11.1 for women.
In contrast, there were both fewer marriages and fewer divorces in the Northeast. Researchers suggest that this may be because of the tendency of people in that region to marry later in life, which may decrease the chance of future marital conflict.
The Illinois divorce rate was equivalent between men and women with an average of 8.0 divorces per 1,000. This was found to be a statistically significant downward deviation from the national average. With regard to marriages, Illinois was also below the national average with 17.9 marriages per 1,000 men and 16.3 marriages per 1,000 women.
Nationally the age of marriage continues to increase with women hearing wedding bells at a median age of 26.5 and men at a median age of 28.4. Marriage rates also are continuing to decline to record low of only 52 percent of adults reporting they were married.
Other findings of the report included that 75 percent of children living with a divorced parent lived with their mother. Women who divorced in the past year also reported lower household incomes than men who recently divorced.
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Divorce Rates Highest in the South, Lowest in the Northeast, Census Bureau Reports