Married At First Sight: “Science” v Statistics in MAFS
What the statistics tell us about the likely success of the “marriages” in the hugely popular Married at First Sight television program.
Married at First Sight purports to marry individuals “scientifically” matched by relationship experts, who meet for the first time at the altar.
Most of us know that the wedding ceremonies occurring in front of the cameras are not legally binding, but the program’s focus on the institution of marriage raises interesting questions about the legalities of marriage as an institution and the current rates of marriage and divorce in Australia.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ most recent figures:
- There were 118,401 marriages registered and 46,604 divorces granted in Australia in 2016;
- Couples who lived together prior to marriage accounted for 80.8% of all marriages registered in 2016, a decrease from the 81.0% recorded in 2015;
- The median age of males and females at marriage was 31.9 and 29.9 years respectively in 2016;
- The median age at marriage for males has increased by 0.2 years, and the females have increased by 0.1 years since 2015;
- Divorces involving children represented 46.9% of all divorces;
- There is an average of 1.8 children per divorce;
- The median duration from marriage to divorce in 2016 was 12.0 years, a slight decrease from 12.1 years reported in 2015;
- The median age at divorce for males was 45.5 years of age and the median ages of females was 42.9 years of age for those divorces granted in 2016 – an increase of 0.2 years of age since 2015 for both sexes.
Leaving aside questions of morality and “reality” television, any couple, particularly those who get married quickly, should be aware of the potential risks. Nearly half of all marriages in Australia end in divorce and in half of those cases there are children involved and the emotional and financial costs for all parties involved can be significant.
Any relationship has its positive and negative attributes. In the event your relationship isn’t working anymore, seek clarity, with James Noble Law.