"I have learnt from my mistakes, its not always wise to jump into marriage." According to the latest statistics, men and women in their 20’s are most likely to seek divorce. Alexandra Ashton reports.
Kelly’s husband has spent the last year of his life in jail. "I did the right thing in separating and going ahead with the divorce, marriage wasn’t supposed to be like this."
The 23-year-old got married in October 2009, "I was only 21 at the time, but I felt it was the right thing to do regardless of my age. As I had only just had my little boy, I felt life was to good to be true."
As things turned 'horribly wrong' the Stoke-on-Trent newlywed decided to go ahead with a divorce just four months after the marriage.
"The whole relationship changed, he was no longer the man I wanted to spend the rest of my life with."
When asked how she felt about the situation she said: "It’s a sad situation to be in, I’m just thankful that my little boy is too young to realise what’s going on around him.
"I think getting married at a young age feels like the right thing to do at that moment, you don’t take into consideration what can go wrong, I think waiting and not rushing into things would help change the high rate of young marriages failing.
"I’ve learnt it’s not always wise to jump straight into marriage at an early age, people change, career paths change, the person you thought you knew can change. If I could go back, I would definitely question my feelings and my reasons for marriage."
Kelly’s divorce is just an example of a young marriage ending in divorce. The latest report published by the office for National Statistics, show that the number of divorces in England and Wales has decreased for the sixth consecutive year.
But for the fifth year running those in their 20’s have had the highest divorce rates, showing a link between young marriages and divorce. 70 percent of divorces were to couples wanting to end their first marriage due to ‘unreasonable behaviour.’
Jane Staff, Senior Partner at Salmons Solicitors said: "I have been a solicitor for more than 30 years and in the last 15-30 years I have worked in North Staffordshire specialising in Family Law. I believe each divorce is different.
"Any marriage can work, any marriage can fall apart, and no one is immune. Some people will work their differences out, whereas, others will throw the towel in.
"The statistics do show younger marriages are most likely to fail, the main reason being unreasonable behaviour. This implies that maturity and age could affect the marriage."
When asked her opinions on marriage and age, Jane said: "All relationships are built on respect and trust I guess.
"If that is lost then for some people there’s no way back. One aspect of young marriages failing could be this reason, maturity levels.
"I do think that if there was counseling before marriage, this could help, I guess all relationships are a delicate balance of emotional trust, respect, power, expectations and control.
"My conclusion is everyone is different, and so there is no answer which fits all types. Cultural, social, economic, emotional, rational and irrational factors all play a part in each marriage and no one can second guess what will happen at any age."
Andrew Robotham has been a lawyer since the age of 18. The now 43-year-old has specialised in family law for 22 years. "I believe one of the problems with younger people getting married these days is that perhaps sometimes they have not experienced enough of life before they decide to settle down" he said.
Andrew who works for Wolley & Co. Solicitors, who has also been head of department in three other law firms believes pressure from peers and society can have an effect on young marriages.
"There seems to be a lot of pressure on people these days to travel, see the world and do all the things they want to do before they settle.
"Many older people perhaps had similar trials and tribulations within their relationships but made a steadfast decision that marriage was a union for life for richer for poorer.
"It was often a more solitary union. However, these days younger people can see relatively easy ways out."
The divorce process can be seen as ‘easy’ and not frowned upon due to the fact that it is so common, resulting in people getting divorced without a second thought.
He added: "I do believe that young marriages can work. I myself got married at a young age and am still married. Many of my friends and family got married at a young age and they are also still married.
"Overall Marriages do take a considerable amount of work, forgiveness and commitment, but there is no reason whatsoever why any young marriage should not work."
FemaleFirst Alexandra Ashton