A married woman diagnosed with a life-threatening illness is six times more likely to divorce than a man in the same position. How’s that for a headline?
The overall divorce rate of people receiving diagnoses of life-threatening illness (in this case cancer and multiple sclerosis) was about in line with the national average. It’s only when you break it down by gender that your eyes pop. When the woman was the disease victim, the rate was 21%. When the man was the victim, the rate was 3%. The results will be published in today’s issue of the journal Cancer.
Does this mean men are more callous than women? That sick women want to be left alone? That women are better at nurturing and care-giving than men? The study doesn’t answer any of these questions, so let the conjecture begin in earnest.