Top 10 Reasons for Divorce

Dictionary entry for divorce with two rings
Originally published on 28th September 2018 at 11:20 AM

The latest stats from the Office for National Statistics show that unreasonable behaviour (one of the grounds you can use to divorce in England and Wales) is still the most common reason used by couples.  36% of all husbands and 51% of all wives used unreasonable behaviour to divorce in 2017, but what were the top 10 reasons for divorce?


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Top 10 Divorce Reasons Used Most Commonly

  1. Falling out of love (no drama – just drifted apart)
  2. Values have changed over time and we no longer agree on important things )
  3. Lack of support emotionally through life’s changes
  4. Disrespectful/demeaning behaviour
  5. Lack of sex and emotional connection
  6. Unbalanced roles especially housework and looking after children
  7. Fallouts with family members
  8. Arguing over money
  9. Stressful working hours/feeling second in line to the other person’s career
  10. Having an affair

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With many couples (approximately 42% of all married couples) divorcing, unreasonable behaviour remains the prominent ground couples use in the absence of no-fault divorce in England and Wales. 

So, you are not alone and it is possible to remain amicable when using this reason to divorce. Here are amicable’s top tips on remaining amicable if you’re using unreasonable behaviour as your reason for divorce.

1. Remember, it’s a private document

Only you, your ex, the court (and any third party such as amicable, online services or lawyers) will see the examples in the document. So, it will never be seen by the public.

2. Write the examples yourself so your ex doesn’t have to or vice versa

To reduce the chances of you rowing, it can work for some couples to write their own examples about themselves so the other person doesn’t have to.

3. Be pragmatic

If you want to get divorced and the other five reasons for divorce aren’t open to you, at this point in time, unreasonable behaviour may be your only option. (unless you’re willing to wait for two years separation or five) Therefore, be pragmatic about the court documents and view them as a means to an end.

4. Focus on the future

If you can be pragmatic and focus on the futures you both want when the divorce is finalised, this can pave the way for an amicable split. This is especially important if you’re transitioning from parents to co-parents.

If you’d like help on writing your unreasonable behaviour examples, get in touch and an amicable Divorce Coach will guide you through the process.


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If you have any questions, or would like some support, please book a free 15-minute call with one of our experts here.


About the author

Hannah Hodgkinson is Head of Marketing at amicable. Hannah has over six years experience working for global NGOs and private consultancies and has a passion for marketing for companies with a social purpose


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