Why Do Unhappy Couples Stay Together?

Marriage is a commitment. It takes a lot of work to make a marriage successful, which is why the divorce rate is near 50%. Many of those couples who are unhappy do eventually divorce, but some stay together until death. But why?

There are many reasons why couples stay together even when the marriage is bad. The marriage may have some benefits for them or they may feel scared to move on. Here are some of the most common reasons to delay divorce.

Health Insurance

Being dependent on a spouse for insurance reduces the likelihood of divorce by 70 percent. That’s because insurance is so expensive. The situation is so bad that people would rather stay in an unhappy marriage than lose their health insurance.


Many couples stay together because their religion would prohibit divorce. This is especially true for Catholics, who believe marriage is sacred. Catholic couples would rather stay together than end their marriage.

Sunk Cost Fallacy

This philosophy is especially true for couples who have been married for decades. This is the belief that a person needs to continue with something because they have already spent so much time and resources on it. A couple has been together for so long, so why end things now? This way of thinking often makes someone keep fighting for their marriage even when it no longer works. It eventually leads to resentment.

Fear of Change

Going from married life to single life is a huge change. It can be scary to end your marriage, especially if you are financially dependent on your spouse. Living on your own can be frightening. It’s no doubt an emotional experience, which is why some people want to avoid this situation. While divorce can be beneficial down the road, it can be nerve-wracking in the short term.

Fear of Divorce Outcome

Many men are scared to divorce because they fear what will happen in the divorce. They could lose custody of their kids and be forced to pay child support and alimony. They may also lose the house and be forced to give their ex half of everything. For many men, it’s cheaper to stay married, even if they are miserable.

External Factors

Sometimes there are obstacles preventing someone from divorcing. These may include not having enough money to hire a divorce lawyer or having kids. While divorcing in these situations can be painful, all people are doing is delaying the inevitable. They are doing more harm than good, especially when they are staying together only for the children.

Contact a Maryland Family Law Attorney Today

There are some couples who are truly unhappy and should divorce. However, they often have barriers keeping them in the relationship.

You have the right to divorce and be happy. While ending a marriage can be emotional, it can lead to more happiness in the future. Let the Columbia divorce attorneys at The Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, P.A. help you with your divorce. Schedule a consultation today. Fill out the online form or call (410) 774-5987. We have two offices to serve you.




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