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The 5 Most Common Reasons Couples Get Divorced Today, According to Therapists

Many failed marriages have one of these things in common.

While most people go into marriage full of love and hope for the future, it doesn't always work out as planned. It has been estimated that 41 percent of all first marriages end in divorce. While as bright-eyed newlyweds this may not seem like a possibility, there are certain things that make a split more as the honeymoon period fades and we are faced with life's inevitable challenges. Read on to discover what therapists think are the most common reasons couples are getting divorced today.

READ THIS NEXT: 5 Signs Your Marriage Is Divorce-Proof, According to Therapists

Lack of premarital planning.

Couples in therapy together.
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"Many couples enter into marriage without discussing the expectation of their relationship," says Kalley Hartman, LMFT at Ocean Recovery. "Without having a clear understanding of how to manage and communicate with each other, it can lead to feelings of frustration and confusion once in a long-term commitment."

It's important to know you are aligned with one another before you step into marriage—but it's not something everyone does.

"Many couples who get divorced do not discuss essential aspects of themselves before marriage," says Hartman. "For example, religious differences, different goals for the future, and different values can all play a role in the success of a marriage."

While before you tie the know is an ideal time to hash these things out, a couples counselor can help you find better ways to communicate during your marriage if you feel your relationship is struggling.

Financial difficulties.

Couple discussing finances together
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As if just simple communication wasn't hard enough, money issues can play a part in the marital problems that lead to divorce.

"Money is often a major source of stress in marriages. Different spending habits, unequal income levels, or a lack of financial planning can cause money problems," says Hartman. "Additionally, life situations like illnesses and job losses can lead to debt and financial troubles, which often causes strain on a marriage."


Man cheating on his wife on the phone.
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While this isn't a shock, cheating is still is a major cause of divorce.

"Infidelity is one of the most common causes of divorce," says Hartman. "It can cause a deep sense of betrayal and mistrust, making it difficult to continue a relationship without that trust. Even if the couple works through their issues through counseling, many don't feel they are able to rebuild the relationship after someone has been unfaithful."

Sadly, many relationships don't survive after initial trust has been broken.

Addiction or substance abuse.

Man drinking alcohol
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Addiction is another common issue that can put a severe strain on any marriage.

"While it is possible to work through addiction, substance abuse impairs judgment and leaves the partner feeling taken advantage of or neglected," says Hartman. "This can lead to a breakdown in communication that is difficult to come back from."

As unfortunate as it is, many marriages don't last because of the emotional toll it can take on the couple.

READ THIS NEXT: 5 Signs Your Relationship Is Headed for a "Gray Divorce," Therapists Say

Communication problems.

Unhappy couple having an argument
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A failure to communicate effectively is another factor that can lead to the deterioration of a marriage.

"When partners are unable to engage in open and honest dialogue, it can result in miscommunications, conflicts, and eroded trust," says Lana Otoya, a dating coach. "This challenge can be exacerbated by hectic lifestyles, conflicting responsibilities, and a general apathy towards the relationship."

Unfortunately, when couple's fail to communicate effectively it can lead to bigger issues of resentment.

Lauren Jarvis-Gibson
Lauren Jarvis-Gibson is an Associate Editor at Best Life. Her work has been published in Teen Vogue, Allure, HuffPost, and more. Read more
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