When friends decide to divorce in Florida, it can have a wide-ranging impact throughout a social group. While many have observed that groups of people seem to divorce around the same time, research has backed up the fact that this is not just an anecdotal phenomenon. Researchers at Brown University, Harvard University and the University of California at San Diego have shown that the social contagion of divorce is a real factor frequently seen in groups of friends or social circles.

People whose friends divorce are 75 percent more likely to end their own marriages. Furthermore, people who have friends of friends divorce are still 33 percent more likely to divorce. There are a number of reasons why this social phenomenon happens; in the first place, many people stay in unhappy marriages out of a sense of inertia. When a friend divorces, it can inspire someone to make a move in their own lives to end an unhealthy relationship. In addition, it can suddenly seem possible to move toward divorce when people see their friends moving through the process successfully. Even the new single life that divorced friends enjoy can be appealing to people who are unhappy in their marriages.

Of course, divorce isn’t the only likely outcome when friends decide to split. Spouses in happy and strong marriages may even become closer through conversations about how they can improve their intimacy and sense of connection. Nevertheless, some divorcing people may notice that married friends will start to avoid them.

Witnessing a friend’s divorce can also give someone a better understanding of the financial, legal and other practical details involved at the end of a marriage. When people think about divorce, a family law attorney can provide advice and representation in matters including property division, spousal support and child custody.