According to a recent US study, women who are diagnosed with either cancer or MS are six times more likely to become divorced or separated as a result of the diagnosis than a man in the same position would be. Earlier research had suggested a similar trend, showing that female cancer patients have a divorce or separation rate of 20.8% compared to 2.9% for male cancer patients.
The studies show that female gender was the strongest predictor of a marital rift after a devastating health diagnosis. They found that women who were left during treatment were more likely to become depressed, spent more time in the hospital, and were less likely to complete their radiation therapy.
Researchers attribute the gender gap to men’s inability to quickly adjust to the responsibility of caring for the sick person, along with their family and home. The study was prompted by neuro-oncology doctors who noticed that their female patients were much more likely to end up alone. The doctors believe that early intervention and counseling may help save some of these marriages, which would in turn improve the prognosis for affected patients. You can read more results from the study at Men more likely than women to leave partner with cancer.
If you are considering divorce, please contact our firm for compassionate legal counsel.