Though most people perceive that doctors are more likely to be involved in a divorce than individuals in other professions, a recent study actually suggests otherwise. The study, , published by The BMJ (formerly the British Medical Journal), examined at the divorce rates of more than 6.5 million individuals, including approximately 250,000 doctors. Here’s what they discovered.
Surprisingly, doctors were significantly less likely to end a marriage in divorce than most other occupations, including others in the medical field. The rate of divorce for physicians was 24%, but health care executives had a 31% divorce rate and one of every three nurses in the study had been a party to a divorce. In fact, professionals outside of the medical field had a 35% divorce rate. Even lawyers had a higher rate than doctors, at 27%.
Unfortunately, the research showed that female doctors were substantially more likely to face divorce than their male counterparts—the study showed a 50% increase for female physicians. Another interesting revelation—female doctors who worked more than 40 hours a week had the highest divorce rates within the medical community, but the opposite proved true for male physician—those working less than 40 hours per week were more likely to become a party to a divorce.
Researchers suggested the higher rates of divorce among female doctors was likely tied to the additional trade-offs that come with being a working mother in the medical profession.