Divorce: the New American Dream

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Divorce: The New American Dream
Although divorce has always been a part of American culture, it has skyrocketed in the last few decades, reaching an all time high of 50% of all marriages ending in separation. Our culture has changed its view on divorce throughout the years and now accepts divorce in society. In the past, divorce was forbidden. People did not discuss the issue as openly as we do today. In the past, divorce was never shown in the media and was looked down on. Today’s culture has shaped divorce into a more positive decision and has made it relatively easy to file for a separation. With all the hype about marriage and living the American dream, I often wonder what has influenced such an increase in the divorce rate over the last few decades.

Perhaps there is more to divorce than the common assumptions such as, stress in relationship or financial issues. Although money and stress attribute to divorce, I believe there is a much bigger cause for the increasing rate. I believe the increasing divorce rates are attributed to advances in women’s rights and their ability to succeed in careers once only suitable for men. Women have pushed for equal rights and in return are not willing to settle considering there well deserved freedom as a women. Unlike in the past, today’s culture presents women with equality among gender and job opportunities, making it easier for them to survive without the help of a spouse. They are no longer limited in choices, and are able to fulfill their dreams and find financial stability without a man to provide it for them.

In the past women stayed home and tended to house work. They had little education and rarely worked outside of the home. Women were expected to get married and play the role as Housewife. According to Rosenberg, “few women had an eight grade education in 1900, where as today, 85 percent finish high school, with more than 22 percent completing college” (245). Considering women’s educational disadvantages in...
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