15 Jobs with the Highest Divorce Rates

Today, I read a study out of Radford University in Virginia from Yahoo News, listing 15 occupations with an elevated risk of divorce.  Naturally, you might assume this list to include professions such as: strippers, NBA players, or pro golfers.  However, I was a little surprised and shocked by some of the professions, the researchers identified as having the highest divorce rates.

So, if you want a lasting marriage, according to the study, these are the guys you want to stay away from. (List is in order of increasing risk of divorce):

Maids and housekeeping cleaners




Baggage porters and concierges

Entertainers and performers, sports and related workers

Nursing, psychiatric, and home health aides

Telephone operators

Factory workers: food and tobacco

Gaming service worker

Extruding machine operator

Gaming cage worker

Massage therapists


Dancers and choreographers

The study also found that some of the professions with the lowest divorce rate are: sales engineers, podiatrists, and transit police.


Approximately 10 percent of all Americans older than age 15 were divorced in 2009, according to a report by the Associated Press, republished on CBSNews.com, citing figures released by the United States Census Bureau. It is impossible to determine whether certain jobs are naturally more prone to divorce or if people with unstable personalities are drawn to certain lines of work, according to “The Washington Post.” Nonetheless, people in some jobs seem to have an unusually high risk for divorce.

In summary, here are the categories of professions that are higher at risk for divorce:

Entertainers And Athletes

According to a 2009 study, “A Comparison of Law Enforcement Divorce Rates with Those of Other Occupations,” published in the “Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology” and reported internationally, dancers and choreographers had the highest probability of divorce. Entertainers and athletes also have a high risk of divorce according to the study, which was co-authored by Michael Aamodt, professor emeritus at Radford University in Virginia, along with student Shawn McCoy. Infidelity plays a major factor in the failure of such high-profile marriages as those of Tiger Woods and Britney Spears, “Independent Woman” reports.

The marriages of massage therapists, nurses and home health aides were also at high risk for divorce, according to Aamodt and McCoy. The stress of the work was an obvious factor, according to Dai Williams, an occupational psychologist and member of the British Psychological Society, quoted by NursingTimes.net. However, long hours and demanding work alone are not to blame for the stress on medical workers’ relationships. Instead, many physicians fail to leave work at work and shortchange their families in the process, claims Wayne Sotile, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, quoted by the “National Review of Medicine.”

Hospitality Workers

Workers in the hospitality industry, including baggage porters, bartenders and concierges, also face high rates of divorce, according to Aamodt and McCoy. High levels of stress combined with little control over their work are contributing factors, according to “Independent Woman.” Hospitality workers who work irregular hours are also more vulnerable to temptation on the job in the form of co-workers and patrons, many of whom dress provocatively, according to Frank Lin, a Nevada divorce attorney quoted in a report by the Associated Press, republished on CBSNews.com.

Law Enforcement And Military

Long deployments away from their families in Iraq and Afghanistan contributed to sharply increasing divorce rates among enlisted soldiers and officers, according to reports from 2005 and 2008 published by “USA Today.” Jeff Shannon, a police officer and licensed marriage and family therapist in California, in a blog post republished by “Law Enforcement Today,” blames “police personality” for high rates of divorce among law enforcement officers. According to Shannon, citing John Gottman’s book “The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work,” men who refused to share control with their wives had an 81 percent chance of divorce.

Less Educated And Low-Wage Workers

Workers with lower levels of education were more likely to divorce than individuals with college degrees, according to University of Maryland sociologist Steve Martin, quoted by MSNBC.com. One reason is that college-educated women are more likely to work outside the home, which has a stabilizing effect on marriage, according to research conducted by Stephanie Coontz, a family studies instructor at Evergreen State College in Washington State, also quoted by MSNBC.com. Better-educated workers tend to obtain better-paid jobs, which produces less stress in marriages, explains Andrew J. Cherlin, a sociology professor Johns Hopkins University, quoted by DivorceSource.com.

Some my question for readers is:  Do you think there’s any truth to this research or a bunch of baloney?

In your opinion, what jobs do you think carry a higher risk of divorce? And do you think it has to do with the actual profession (as in, a bartender has more chances to cheat and ultimately, end his marriage) or do you think men likely to divorce tend to choose these occupations?  What do you think?  Please leave your comments in the comment box below.

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2 responses to “15 Jobs with the Highest Divorce Rates

  1. i have heard that doctors and housewives have very high chances of cheating too. Humm.. i think to some extent your profession does increase the likelihood you are going to cheating, but it cannot be wholly responsible though. However, if a person innately has cheating instincts, then it doesn’t really matter what profession he is, he is going to cheat anyway.

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