The legal termination of a matrimonial bond by a law court is referred to as divorce. The number of divorce lawsuits has risen in recent years. The conflict theory is one of several ideas that can be used to describe this phenomenon. Mankind is often in conflict, as per conflict theory, which was initially stated by Karl Marx, because of the competition over scarce resources. Dominance and power, rather than consensus and conformity, are assumed to perpetuate the family system in conflict theory.
As per a key concept of conflict theory, individuals and organizations within the community will aim to maximize their own power and money. As per conflict theorists, divorce is the consequence of a struggle over a marriage’s assets. According to conflict theory, the breakdown of marriage is driven by intra-marriage rivalry for resources and power, just as it is throughout society when groups battle for limited resources (Liska,2018). Divorce occurs when the partners in marriage seem unable to decide on how to divide funds and authority inside their relationship.
Various research has shown that a variety of factors are the root causes of divorce in relationships. According to recent data, approximately 40 to 50 percent of all first marriages will end in divorce each year (Margolis et al., 2019). However, when it comes to statistics on second marriages, it can be observed that divorce rates are higher than first marriages, with 60 to 65 percent of them ending in divorce (Margolis et al., 2019). Employment challenges, education, and financial insecurity or poverty are examples of these issues. These are challenges that influence one partner’s or the couple’s resources. According to the Labor Force Survey (LFS), in 2015, 82.0 percent of women ages 25 and 54 participated in the labor market (Margolis et al., 2019). Married males have had the greatest rate of employment from the advent of the current LFS in 1976, preceded by the split, divorced, or bereaved men, and single men. Wives, on the other hand, have traditionally had the smallest employment rate. These figures have altered in recent years. In recent years, women have been seen to have more job prospects than in the past. When there is a significant wage disparity between the couple’s employed occupations, it frequently leads to tensions and, finally, divorce. Marriages in which each partner makes 40-60% of gross income are more likely to end up divorced than marriages in which the wife earns less (Margolis et al., 2019). In a culture where equitable gender ideas prevail, around equal earnings for both partners would maintain marriage if complying with prevalent views contributes to a more stable marriage. Owing non-traditional power relationships, a scenario where the wife earns more than her husband may destabilize the partnership. It can be extrapolated from these facts, as Karl Marx indicated in his theory, that resources, in this case, money, contribute to marital problems and finally divorce.
Furthermore, financial insecurity and poverty play a role in the rise in divorce cases in Canada. In the ten years following marriage, divorce accounted for 12 percent of the educational gap in poverty among the general population and 26 percent in mothers (Margolis et al., 2019). Negative transitory household income shocks, according to econometric data, increase the likelihood of divorce (Hogendoorn, Leopold & Bol, 2020). There are certain disparities in the implications of household income disruptions on divorce propensities that are likely to increase.
One of the leading causes of divorce in Canada is conflicting opinions about how to manage money. When people marry, they rapidly discover that they and their spouses may have opposing perspectives on almost every subject, including personal finance or money. Conflicts may emerge if one couple is saving while the other is consuming, resulting in issues and possibly divorce. This, therefore, supports the Conflict theory, where marriage tends to collapse due to rivalry for resources and authority concerning finances in the marriage institution.
Another financial issue that affects marriages is misaligned financial objectives. Couples should address their financial goals before getting married, not afterward. These conversations should take place well in advance of the wedding. When a couple’s financial interests aren’t aligned, they’re more prone to fight. Divorce might result from too many disputes and frustration.
In Canada, credit card debt is also a factor in divorce settlements. Credit card debt may be a major source of worry and contention. If one partner accumulates debt while another is continually paying it off, the one who is continuously paying will feel exploited and dislike their spouse (Hogendoorn, Leopold & Bol, 2020). If one person brings a lot more credit debt into the marriage, there ought to be an understanding that each spouse is liable for the debt they contributed into the marriage. This is in support of the conflict theory, where marriage collapse due to rivalry for resources and authority within the union.
In conclusion, as previously said, money difficulties have long been a source of contention in marriages and have frequently contributed to divorce cases in Canada. To address the country’s divorce problem, it is critical to address the financial concerns that are harming marriages. Furthermore, Karl Marx’s Conflict Theory is viewed to corroborate the grounds of many divorce cases owing to resource-related issues.
Hogendoorn, B., Leopold, T., & Bol, T. (2020). Divorce and diverging poverty rates: A risk‐and‐vulnerability approach. Journal of Marriage and Family, 82(3), 1089-1109.
Liska, A. E. (2018). Modeling the conflict perspective of social control. In Inequality, crime, and social control (pp. 53-71). Routledge.
Margolis, R., Choi, Y., Hou, F., & Haan, M. (2019). Capturing trends in Canadian divorce in an era without vital statistics. Demographic Research, 41, 1453-1478.