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In a society that highlights freedom of religion as a hallmark value, interfaith marriage is bound to occur. Such unions are surprisingly common in the United States, although same-faith marriages continue to dominate. Still, statistics from the Pew Research Center suggest that nearly four of every ten Americans married since 2010 have spouses with different faiths. Despite the prominence of such couples, interfaith marriage remains shrouded in misconceptions. Below, we separate fact from fiction:

The Role of Age in Interfaith Unions

While we like to think of younger individuals as more progressive, age doesn’t play quite the role in interfaith unions that you might expect: younger spouses are actually less likely to marry somebody of a different faith. Results from a YouGov poll suggest that 67 percent of people ages 36 to 45 are in interfaith unions, compared to just 48 percent of spouses under the age of 25.

How Likely Are Interfaith Couples to Divorce?

The bad news: interfaith couples are more likely to divorce than those who share the same faith. That being said, all hope of a harmonious union is not lost if spouses hold different beliefs. Furthermore, not all faith matches are equally likely to divorce. For example, the divorce rate for evangelicals and non-religious spouses is an astounding 61 percent. Meanwhile, Catholics in interfaith marriages are just as likely to divorce as those married to other Catholics.

Same Values Versus Same Religion

Many spouses in interfaith marriages separate values from religion. In the aforementioned YouGov poll, four in five respondents claimed that similar values were more integral to a working relationship than similar faiths. The surprise? This belief was equally common for same-faith and interfaith respondents.

Regardless of the role faith plays in your marriage, it’s critical that you seek assistance from a compassionate family attorney as you pursue divorce. Look to the law firm of Barna, Guzy & Steffen, Ltd. for kind-hearted service during this difficult process.