DIVORCE rates in China have soared over recent months as a result of couples being forced to spend time together due to the coronavirus lockdown with a reported 300 couples having filed for separation in Sichuan Province since February 24.
With the Covid-19 pandemic raging, governments worldwide have introduced lockdowns, forcing couples to spend more time together indoors. This has apparently led to an increase in divorce applications, with the marriage registry in Dazhou, in Sichuan Province of south-western China reported 300 scheduled appointments for divorce in just under two months.
Lu Shijun, the manager of the registry in Dazhou, said he believes the sharp increase of divorce requests could be caused by the fact that partners have spent too much time in close quarters under quarantine. Marriage registration offices in Xi’an of Shaanxi Province in north-western China have also seen an unprecedented rise of divorce appointments since re-opening on March 1.
Mr Lu said: “Young people are spending a lot of time at home. They tend to get into heated arguments because of something petty and rush into getting a divorce.”
One Shaanxi Province district office received 14 requests in one day, hitting the upper limit set by the local council. Officials in Fuzhou, Fujian Province of southern China, have adjusted the number of divorce appointments to 10 couples a day after receiving an overwhelming amount of requests.
Scientists have been debating about whether spending time in close quarters is beneficial for couples. A 2018 study found couples who lived together before marriage had lower divorce rates in the first year, compared with couples who did not.
However, higher divorce rates appeared after people living with their spouses for five years or longer. Another research showed living together could protect lovers against getting a divorce.