Religious Service Attendance, Divorce, and Remarriage Among U.S. Women

37 Pages Posted: 31 Dec 2016

See all articles by Shanshan Li

Shanshan Li

Harvard University - T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Laura Kubzansky

Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health

Tyler VanderWeele

Harvard University

Date Written: December 29, 2016

Abstract

Religious participation can promote marital satisfaction and stability. However, current literature has mainly used cross-sectional data. We prospectively evaluated the associations between service attendance and either 1) divorce or separation; or 2) remarriage in the Nurses’ Health Study, a large prospective cohort study that consisted of US married female nurses, with repeated measures of service attendance and marital status. During 14 years of follow up, among 66,444 married nurses, frequent services attendance was associated with 50% lower risk of divorce (95% CI: 32%, 63%). Among divorced or separated women, frequent service attendance was not associated with likelihood of remarriage; however, among widowed women, frequent service attendance was associated with a 49% increased likelihood of remarriage (95% CI: 13%, 97%). The study provides evidence that frequent services attendance is associated with lower risk of becoming divorced, and increased likelihood of remarriage among widowed women, but not among divorced or separated women.

Keywords: divorce, religion, remarriage, separation, widowhood

JEL Classification: J12

Suggested Citation

Li, Shanshan and Kubzansky, Laura and VanderWeele, Tyler, Religious Service Attendance, Divorce, and Remarriage Among U.S. Women (December 29, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2891385 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2891385

Shanshan Li

Harvard University - T.H. Chan School of Public Health ( email )

677 Huntington Ave
Boston, MA MA 02115
United States

Laura Kubzansky

Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health ( email )

677 Huntington Ave
Boston, MA MA 02115
United States

Tyler VanderWeele (Contact Author)

Harvard University ( email )

1875 Cambridge Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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