Divorce-Risk Patterns in Same-Sex 'Marriages' in Sweden and Norway

Gunnar Andersson, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research
Turid Noack, Statistics Norway
Ane Seierstad, Statistics Norway
Harald Weedon-Fekjaer, Statistics Norway

The present study provides an investigation of patterns in divorce risks of partners in same-sex marriages, or registered partnerships ("partnerskap"), in Sweden and Norway. A comparison with patterns in divorce risks in heterosexual marriages is provided. Our study is based on longitudinal information from the population registers of the two countries covering all persons in partnerships. Our demographic analyses involve information on characteristics such as age, sex, geographical background, experience of previous opposite-sex marriages, biological parenthood, and educational attainment of the partners involved. We find that to a large extent patterns in divorce are quite similar in same-sex and opposite-sex marriages, but that interesting differences nevertheless occur between the family types considered. If we only compare levels in union dissolution, divorce risks are considerably higher in same-sex than in opposite-sex marriages. The divorce risk in female partnerships is practically double that of the risk in partnerships of men.

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Presented in Session 138: The Attractiveness of Marriage among Straight and Gay Couples in Europe and the U.S.