They've spent a year separated, with minimal contact. One of them was overseas, unable to come home except for a short stay when the job allowed. This wasn't a legal separation, or one that either of them wanted, but now it's leading to divorce. As troops come home, often from extended deployments overseas, military couples are finding trouble keeping their marriages alive.
According to USA Today, nearly 30,000 troops will divorced this year, marking the largest percentage of military divorce in 12 years. As the war in Iraq ends, many troops are reuniting with their families and spouses who they haven't been around for extended periods of time. Their children may have grown a year or two older and their spouses may have found new jobs or started new hobbies. These changes, on top of readjusting to home life might be all too unbearable for a married couple to deal with.
Data released earlier this week by the Pentagon said a divorce rate of 5 percent of Air Force enlisted personnel made it the military branch with the highest number of divorces. The Navy's divorce rate was much lower at 3.6 percent, but still the highest for that branch since 2004. The overall military divorce rate for 2011 was 3.7 percent.
Military divorce is something that can be complicated, given one spouse has been away for so long. It is important to find a family law attorney who can effectively navigate the process with respect for those involved.
Source: USA Today, "Military divorce rate at highest level since 1999," Gregg Zoroya, Dec. 13, 2011