AFP – Will inflation get the better of romance? That’s what a new British survey suggests, identifying the current economic crisis as one of the main potential causes of relationship breakdown in 2023.
Rampant inflation throughout the European continent has many impacts on purchasing power, ranging from daily essentials and leisure activities to outings and even pet adoption!
But, according to a recent survey carried out for the British charity Relate, which specialises in marriage counselling, another significant aspect of our lives could be threatened by inflation – our relationships.
The survey even goes so far as to name the rising cost of living as one of the most likely potential causes of separation in 2023. And that’s not exactly good news in these difficult times, when many people are hoping to get off to a better start in the new year.
The survey was conducted among 2,033 heterosexual adults in a relationship. More than a third of them (35 per cent) expressed fear that inflation would put pressure on their relationship in the coming months (39 per cent of men and 31 per cent of women). This concern was particularly evident among couples with children, the survey authors noted.
The income gap between two partners is also mentioned as a source of tension within couples.
“Financial worries are an issue for many couples and families we see at Relate – particularly when their household income is not keeping pace with the increasing cost of living,” explained Relate counsellor Josh Smith.
Another factor may also explain the link between inflation and relationship breakdown, especially among young couples, who might move in together after a few months to share the cost of bills. But living under the same roof is an important step in a relationship, and doing so hastily could eventually lead to a break-up.
The decision to publish this survey in January is by no means a coincidence. According to divorce lawyers, the beginning of the year is a period traditionally associated with a peak in breakups. It is a phenomenon that can be explained by the stress, even the anxiety, experienced during family gatherings synonymous with the end-of-year period. Or by the desire to take advantage of the new year to make a fresh start.