The more lavish the wedding, the more likely it won’t last long

wedding_rings_rotating_500_wht_515A few months ago I posted some research from America that suggested that the bigger the wedding you had the happier you would be.

But trust economists to come up with more negative findings. They have found that the more expensive the wedding the shorter it lasts. 

They cite Kim Kardashian’s previous marriage to Kris Humphries which cost £6 million and only lasted 72 days. She spent £8 million on her last marriage in May so she should be filing divorce papers about now.

Elizabeth Hurley’s marriage to Arun Nayar in 2007 only cost £1.5 million but was spread over 8 days and two continents and ended in divorce after 4 years. You could go on eg Cheryl Cole and Ashley Cole lasted 4 years.

The two economists, Andrew Francis and Hugo Mialon, at Emory University in Atlanta who carried out they study on over 3,000 people said “We find evidence that marriage duration is inversely associated with spending on the engagement ring and wedding ceremony”.

The economists produced some interesting statistics which will not be welcome to the burgeoning wedding industry – including De Beers urging men to spend two months salary  on an engagement ring.

  • Women whose weddings cost $20,ooo or more were 3.5 times more likely to end up divorced than women who spent $5-10,000.
  • Men who spent $2,ooo – $4,000 on an engagement ring were 1.3 times more likely to end up divorced than those who spent $500 – $2,000.

So why do people go along with more and more lavish weddings? The economists blame the wedding industry for “commoditising love and romance” i.e. putting a value and a price on it.

In 1959 Brides magazine recommended that couples spent 3 months planning the wedding with 22 tasks to complete. Fifty years later that advice is 12 months planning and a checklist of 44 items. You hear of wedding planning that lasts longer than some of these celebrity weddings. Stag/hen weekends in Europe followed by the same again at home for those who couldn’t make the foreign trip followed by pre-wedding spa sessions. Seems to me to be more stressful than actually getting married!

The Chief Executive at the Tavistock Centre for Couple Relationships in London believes that couple who go over the top to create a “perfect day” “may be aware of an underlying problem in their relationship” and points out that once the event is over there’s just the two of you in the relationship (although these days there may be children from previous partners in the equation).

And looking back at the previous post on bigger weddings = more happiness, they did only follow them up for a couple of years.




2 thoughts on “The more lavish the wedding, the more likely it won’t last long

  1. Mrs H says:

    Great post, and I can quite believe it… perhaps the quick failure rating is also linked to the ‘post wedding blues’ that people seem to have when they have spent anything from a year to three years planning one day and then feel they have nothing to do… I myself quite looked forward to when all the planning would be done and we could get back to living normal life, that was after all why we decided to get married in the first place!

    • info4u2bu says:

      Thanks for your kind comments. One thing I didn’t mention was the danger of couples starting their married life in debt because of what they spent on the wedding

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