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According to a recent article in Sound Vision, the rate of divorce in the Muslim community has gone up in recent years for a number of various reasons, “ranging fro incompatibility to infidelity.” The national divorce rate varies depending on which research is considered, but the commonly accepted rate of divorce among Americans is roughly 50 percent. That rate is traditionally much lower among the Muslim community, and a study cited in Islamic Horizons magazine notes that the divorce rate for American Muslims in the 1990s was about 31 percent. While this is much lower than the national average, it’s much higher than “the Muslim world’s two highest divorce rates: Turkey and Egypt, with 10 percent each.”
According to Sound Vision, in the Islamic community divorce is usually seen as a method of last resort to get out of an abusive or unsatisfactory marriage for both men and women, and has long been frowned upon in the Islamic community. Yet Sound Vision reports that “there clearly seems to be a move away from the attitude that couples should stay together even in the unhappiest of marriages for the sake of the children, a view once held by many Muslim immigrants.” Edmund Arroyo, a social worker in the Oakbrook-based Heartspeak Institute told Sound Vision that while the older generation stuck it out to “save face,” they often claimed they were staying married for the children, and that trend seems to be fading with time. Hamaira Basith of Chicago sought a divorce precisely because she was having a child: “I would not raise a child with him and pass on his absurdities to another human being,” she told Sound Vision.
A study conducted by the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding reports that, “religious divorce is very important for a diverse group of North American Muslims.” This could mean months of effort to obtain religious approval for a divorce. Yet the first step for anyone choosing to begin the process of divorce is to seek the counsel of a family law attorney.
If you or someone you know is considering divorce, don’t go through it alone. Contact a dedicated Illinois divorce lawyer today.
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