Revealed: 10 key reasons for high UAE divorce rate

The UAE has one of the highest divorce rates in the world because of lack of love between married couples, polygamy, violence by husbands and other reasons, according to the government Marriage Fund
Experts at the fund, created nearly two decades ago to support marriages among Emiratis, listed 10 key factors for the high divorce rates among nationals, including interference by relatives in the marriage life and lack of coherence among couples.

"The high divorce rates among Emiratis are no longer confined to newly-wed couples but to those who are married for a long time.

Most of the divorces in the country take place in the 18-23 age group," said Aisha Al Huwaidi, an expert at the fund.
"The most important reasons for the divorces include lack of love and the absence of understanding and dialogue between married couples, poor religious motivation, the social and cultural gap, violence by husbands and marriage of another woman."

Another expert, Mouza Saeed, said a large part of the divorces was a result of financial problems on the grounds the living standards normally decline after marriage.

In a previous study, the Marriage Fund said that more than a fifth of the marriages involving national spouses in the UAE end up in divorce.

It said this meant that the UAE, the second largest Arab economy, has the highest divorce rate in the oil-rich Gulf.
In 2011, marriages involving local spouses totalled 10,008, including 7,553 national couples, 1,798 native men and foreign women, and 737 local women and foreign men.

Excluding foreign couples, divorces totalled 2,181, accounting for nearly 21.6 per cent of the total marriages, the highest divorce rate in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), the report showed.

Divorces in mixed marriages were much higher than those in local marriages, accounting for 27.2 per cent in 2010 compared with 19.6 per cent among national spouses.

Divorce was highest in marriages involving local husbands and foreign wives, standing at around 32.4 per cent. Divorce was lowest in marriages involving foreign husbands and national wives accounting for 15.1 per cent.

Following are the 10 key reasons cited by the Marriage Fund for the high divorce rate in the UAE:

Social and financial gap


Lack of coherence and love

Absence of dialogue and understanding

Interference by relatives

Violence and husbands’ tendency to dominate

Failure by the couple to shoulder responsibilities

Dominance of consumer culture in the marriage life

Poor religious motivation

Marrying another woman

(Home page image courtesy Shutterstock)

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