New research by law firm Slater and Gordon reveals the reasons why people got married despite their doubts
More than half of divorced people had wedding day doubts, new research by lawyers Slater and Gordon has found.
According to a poll of 1,600 divorced people, 52 per cent had doubts on the big day but still went ahead anyway.
One in 10 said they felt physically sick on their wedding day while a fifth said they spent the day worrying about the future, rather than enjoying the moment.
Only a tiny minority (four per cent) said they confronted their partner with their doubts and discussed what would happen if the marriage failed.
Yet despite the union fizzling out, six out of 10 said they don’t regret their marriage.
20 per cent of couples had doubts long before their wedding day
While most bride and grooms spend the period before their wedding drafting table plans, picking out flowers and selecting caterers, one in five (20 per cent) divorced Brits were struggling with pre-wedding jitters.
The most common reasons people went through with the ceremony despite their doubts were they hoped it would just work out (48 per cent), they thought it was too late to pull out (33 per cent), they felt pressure from their family to go through with it (16 per cent) or they couldn’t do it to their partner (16 per cent).
One in seven (14 per cent) said they thought they would be able to get their partner to change for the better once they had exchanged vows and 13 per cent felt too guilty.
In spite of their concerns seven per cent of divorcees admitted they had spent so much money on the big day they didn’t feel they could cancel it no matter how worried they were that the relationship would fail.
One in 10 (10 per cent) said they walked down the aisle because they felt they should as they had children together, while eight per cent believed that being married would fix their problems.
Amanda McAlister, head of family law at Slater and Gordon said: “It is entirely natural to be nervous on your wedding day and many people who are have very happy, lifelong marriages.
“But we also have some clients who say they had an early instinct their marriage might not be successful and now regret not listening to that doubt.
“I would advise anyone considering marriage to think carefully, not only about long term compatibility, but also about protecting any children involved and their assets.
“We tell clients to be realistic and have those difficult conversations about concerns and worries with their partner as early as possible. It’s much harder to resolve living arrangements after a relationship has completely broken down if there has been no conversation about worst case scenarios in advance.
“Ending a marriage is a sad and difficult decision to make but it’s often made worse because people are left with the uncertainty of what will happen to their assets.
“It’s important to also be clear about what your expectations are of marriage and your partner in advance of exchanging vows.”
Top ten reasons doubting Brits walked down the aisle
1. Just hoped it would work out
2. Felt it was too late to pull out
3. Thought doubts were just nerves or “jitters”
4. Didn’t want to split up
5. Felt pressure from family
6. Could do it to their partner
7. Thought their spouse would change once they were married
8. Felt too guilty to stop the wedding
9. They had children and felt they should get married
10. Too embarrassed to end the engagement
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