Denver, CO- A new study which will be presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association in Denver showed that men tend to drink more after a divorce.
The study was conducted over a period of 47 years where the alcohol consumption of more than 5,000 Wisconsin residents were examined and revealed some surprising results.
The researchers were most intrigued by the realization that women drank more during their marriage than after their divorce. But the statistics are opposite for men, who drank less after the tied the knot, due to the influence of their wives.
“Stable marriage curbs men’s drinking yet is associated with a slightly higher level of alcohol use among men,” the authors of the study wrote.
Interviews with the study’s participants revealed that drinking habits during marriage were directly influenced by a spouse. On average, men drink more than women, and the statistic remains true for married and single men.
The men in the study listed three main reasons they drank less during marriage: They spend less time with their “drinking buddies;” their wives drank less; and their wives worked to limit the amount they drank.
However after a marriage fails men began to drink more which is due in part to a difference in coping mechanisms. “Some research suggests that men are more likely to cope with stressors in an ‘externalizing’ ways (i.e. alcohol use) while women are likely to cope in ‘internalizing’ ways (e.g. depression,” lead researcher Corrine Reczek told LiveScience.
Divorce attorneys know firsthand how tumultuous a divorce can be. Not only does a couple have to wrangle with their emotions and anger, but they must also handle a host of pragmatic issues. They may be involved in contentious fight over child custody and turn to alcohol to suppress their emotions. Pre-nuptial agreements are good ways to handle the pragmatic problems that could arise so the parties have only their emotions to deal with.