10-year relationship contracts could replace marriages and prevent divorce, say relationship experts

Experts believe that it is more realistic to commit for a decade than a lifetime 

Kashmira Gander
Monday 05 December 2016 11:42 GMT
Couples are turning their backs on marriage
Couples are turning their backs on marriage

When over one in three marriages ends in divorce, staying together ‘til death do us part seems unrealistic. With that in mind, couples are being advised to turn their backs on marriage and consider entering ten-year contracts instead.

Couples who choose a contract over a life-long union firstly lay out their goals for the relationship and financial terms should it end, and agree to stay together for a decade. The pair then reconsiders the future of their relationship as the milestone approaches.

Dating experts argue that this prevents messy divorces by giving couples a chance to re-evaluate their relationship. Official figures suggest that rates of divorce in the UK rise and reach a peak between the ages of 40 to 44-years-old - around a decade after the average couple ties the knot.

Dr Nikki Goldstein, a relationship expert, told Daily Mail Australia that couples do not want to be “seen to be failing” but “never stop to think ‘why isn’t it working for us?’”.

She added it is positive to allow couples to make their own rules when it comes to marrige, and suggested a contract could prevent divorce rather than encouraging break-ups.

Recently married Casey Beros and her husband, who isn't named, have taken inspiration from this idea. She told the newspaper that they opted to remove “til death do us part” from their vows because they wanted to avoid “promising forever” and “throwing caution to the wind.”

US WealthySingleMommy.com blogger Emma Johnson has also aruged that the 10-year contract could be the best way forward for most couples. She wrote that she ignored the statistics thinking "no, no, no! Our marriage would survive.

“When we divorced, I was genuinely shocked. Now I see I was genuinely naïve.”

She added that the contract “embraces the human drive to formally couple” while offering the “legal and emotional protection” of a marriage.

“We no longer expect anything to last forever," she added.

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