The increase in the U.S. divorce rate to its current high level is one of the most talked-about demographic trends of the last few decades. In 1930, the divorce rate per 1,000 population was 1.6 in the United States, little over 50 years later, in 1981, it had more than tripled to a high of 5.3. While by 1992, the divorce rate had declined somewhat to 4.8.
It has plateaued at a historically high-level Scholars and social commentators have devoted considerable attention to the wide-reaching effects of divorce and especially to its economic consequences for women and children. In 1992, 1.215 million marriages ended in divorce, involving over two percent of all marriages. Over a million children are involved in divorces each year. Of the 66 million children of all races under the age of 18 in 1992, 26 percent lived with only one parent.
Over half of those living with a divorced or separated parent. The rise in the divorce rate has radically altered the probability that a marriage will survive until the death of one or the other spouse. For cohorts boom around 1890, the probability that a marriage would end in divorce was around 16 percent. Recent projections have found that anywhere from one-half to as many as two-thirds of current marriages are expected to end in divorce.
After falling gradually over time, the median age at first marriage began to rise slowly in the 1960s and took a sharp upward turn in the 1980s Marriage rates have been declining since the 1950s, at the same time that divorce rates have been rising Remarriage rates first rose in the 1960s, in response to the higher divorce rates, but turned down again and have fallen steadily over the last 25 years.