Having a child can drastically change the dynamics in a romantic relationship. For some couples, the stress of co-parenting can quickly diminish the partnership, leaving individuals feeling stressed and isolated. However, the results of a recent study indicate divorce rates in couples marrying after having a child are surprisingly lower than those in couples pursuing the traditional marriage-then-baby timeline. In any event, couples with children must be prepared to make several significant decisions when pursuing a divorce or dissolution of the relationship, including visitation, custody, and child support matters.
According to the Council on Contemporary Families, couples who choose to get married after having a child actually fare better than originally thought. Traditionally, divorce rates among parents who married after having a child were much higher than those of parents who were already married at the time of their child’s birth. Now, recent data shows divorce rates among these two groups is about equal, representing a decrease in divorce rates among the baby-then-marriage group.
This is so because there is more of an acceptance of cohabitation before marriage and this new family form is more common. In other words, the notion of cohabitation before marriage – particularly with a child is now much more widely accepted and this has created a a more welcoming environment for couples choosing to take a less traditional path to creating a modern family.
In Arizona, the family court determines both parents as equal regardless of marital status when deciding matters like visitation, child custody and support. There is no preference or special treatment under the law for parents to be married (or not) when deciding the best course of action in these contexts.