Just because your last marriage ended in “I don’t” doesn’t mean you won’t say “I do” again.
Remarriage is on the rise in the U.S., with four out of 10 new marriages involving at least one partner who was married before, according to a Pew Research Center report. The report, based on newly released data from the U.S. Census Bureau, showed that 23 percent, or 42 million Americans, had been married more than once, compared to 17 percent in 1980 and just 13 percent in 1960. An optimistic eight percent have been married three or more times.
The researchers say there are several reasons for this growing trend: The rise in divorce rates means that more people are available to remarry in the first place. In addition, we’re also living longer (which means there are more widows and widowers) and living longer means we have more time to marry, divorce and remarry than in the past.
There’s also a greater age gap between people who remarry compared to first-time newlyweds, according to the report. Some 16 percent of newly remarried couples include a husband who is at least 10 years older than his spouse, compared to just four percent of first-time newlywed couples. Not exactly an auspicious start considering that research shows the greater the age gap between the pair, the more likely they are divorce.
Of course, getting married again post-divorce isn’t on everyone’s ‘to do’ list. A Pew Research Center survey found that divorced or widowed women were more likely than men to pass on getting hitched again.
But for those who are ready to jump back into wedlock, there are several benefits to being in a healthy, supportive marriage: You have a vested interest in taking care of each other, which means you’re more likely to eat right and exercise, as well as have greater social support.
Although it’s not exactly romantic, there’s also a good economic reason to remarry: you’ll be better off financially. The Pew Research Center analysis found that remarried adults fare better economically than their currently divorced counterparts and about as well as those in their first marriage.