Having More Siblings May Mean Success in Marriage

   By SheSpeaksTeam  Aug 20, 2013

The relationships between siblings may be more important for the success of a marriage than we ever thought. A new study, from the Ohio State University (OSU), suggests that having more siblings in our lives lowers the risk of divorce in the long run.

Headline and Global News reported the findings of the OSU study that showed a correlation between large families with many siblings and a much lower divorce rate.  The researchers stated in the report that each brother or sister we have lowers our chances of divorce by 2% per sibling.

Co-author of the study, Doug Downey, explains how the risk of divorce is much more evident when looking at larger families. Downey says, “The practical difference between having no siblings and having one or two isn't that much in terms of divorce. But when you compare children from large families to those with only one child, there is a meaningful gap in the probability of divorce.”

According to the study, having seven siblings would provide “additional protection” from a failed marriage. Researchers believe having more than just one or two siblings may help a marriage survive because we learn to live under the same roof with a lot of different personalities at a young age, making it easier to live with a spouse later in life.

The constant interaction with a varied group of people seems to be the reason people who come from a family with many siblings have a leg up on only-childs, and those with only one or two siblings when it comes to marriage. Downey explains, “Growing up in a family with siblings, you develop a set of skills for negotiating both negative and positive interactions. You have to consider other people's points of view, learn how to talk through problems. The more siblings you have, the more opportunities you have to practice those skills...That can be a good foundation for adult relationships, including marriage.”

What do you think of the study that suggests having more siblings can lower your risk of divorce?

Do you think the interactions you had with your siblings growing up helped you navigate relationships later in life?

Make a Comment

marip1 by marip1 | RACINE, WI
Sep 19, 2013

I don't think having more siblings can lower your risk. I know of couples that had a lot of siblings and it didn't lower their risk.