It is common for couples in Georgia and others across the country to cohabitate prior to marriage. A recent opinion article printed in the New York Times, however, has recently cast such living arrangements in a negative light.
A psychologist stated that couples who live together before marriage are often left unsatisfied and end up in divorce. She calls this trend the "cohabitation effect."
The rationalization for such beliefs comes from the theory that once individuals live together, it is harder for them to break up or leave one another. Supporters of this conclusion claim that once in this position, the couple stays together out of convenience rather than for the love of one another. According to this particular psychologist, this situation leads to a doomed marriage.
Cohabitation researchers, however, see things a bit differently.
According to these individuals, recent studies show cohabitation has no effect on the possibility of divorce. Rather, they believe living together before marriage may have the opposite effect, allowing couples to realize they aren't compatible before they take the leap into marriage.
Rather than researching and discussing the link between divorce and cohabitation, this time and energy could be focused on positive issues such as offering individuals education and resources on how to handle the transition from living single to living together.
Whether a couple cohabitates before marriage or not, they may be faced with divorce later on in life. If that is the case, it is best to seek the guidance of an experienced attorney who can help couples come to an agreement while working to protect the rights of their client.
Source: The Daily Beast, "The case for cohabitation," Hannah Seligson, April 18, 2012