The diamond company De Beers came up with the ad campaign, “A diamond is forever,” in 1947, capturing the imagination of the public, entrenching the notion that engagement rings should only be of diamonds. And since then, countless men have gone down on one knee, with a diamond ring in their hand to propose to their lady love, and in the process, spending a small fortune on the rings. But does that mean the bigger the diamond, the happier the couple will be, and the longer they are likely to stay together? According to a recent study, that is not the case.
Hmmm, interesting correlating the amount spent on an engagement ring to the duration of the marriage.
Two economics professors Andrew M Francis and Hugo M Mialon of Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, have found in their study titled, “‘A diamond is forever’ and other fairy tales,” that the more couples spend on wedding related expenses, the less they are likely to stay together.
The study analyzed data from 3,000 married or once-married heterosexual couples, where the researchers sought to “evaluate the association between wedding spending and marriage duration.”
Keeping it small and sweet (KISS)
The professors found that men who spent between $2000 and $4000 on engagement rings were 1.3 times more likely to get divorced than men who spent between $500 and $2000 on a ring.
Ostentation doesn’t mean it will last
The study claims that if a couple spent over $20,000 on their wedding, they were 3.5 times more likely to get divorced than women who spent between $5,000 and $10,000. According to The Knot, an average cost of an American wedding is $28,858. And spending less than $1,000 on a wedding even further decreased the chances of a divorce. So, the less you spend on your wedding, the longer you will stay married to your partner!
“In 1959, Bride’s recommended that couples set aside two months to prepare for their wedding and published a checklist with 22 tasks for them to complete. By the 1990s, the magazine recommended 12 months for wedding preparation and published a checklist with 44 tasks to complete,” the professors said in their work.
Looks aren’t everything
Looks fade with time; it’s inevitable. Partners who decided to marry someone with their looks playing an important factor in that decision were associated with a higher rate of divorce. Also, the couples who battled greater age and education differences in their marriage experienced an increased rate of divorce, according to the study’s results.
Lot of guests + Honeymoon = Marital bliss (probably)
Researchers found that if a couple who had a lot of guests in attendance at their weddings, were more likely to stay together. Not only that, but if a couple went on a honeymoon, even a cheap one, was positively associated with the length of a marriage.
It is important to note that these relationships between wedding spending and the duration of marriage are much more correlation than causation. There are plenty of happily married couples who have diamonds the size of a golf ball gracing their fingers. There are also others, who are miserable despite spending a modest amount of money on their weddings. And with the average cost of a wedding in the US hovering in the vicinity of $30,000, it’s bound to put some pressure on the couple if they fall into debt right after marriage.