Post Last Edit by ifanonline at 14-9-2010 17:19 |
Number of divorces rises by 105pc
MARRIAGES are breaking down faster than they are being built. The divorce rates in Malaysia are rising sharply.
In 2002, for every 9.6 marriages registered, there was one divorce. Last year, in every 6.1, there was one.
Researcher John Emmanuel Kiat said while the number of marriages had increased by 21 per cent (153,318 to 199,586) from 2002 to last year, the number of divorces had gone up by as much as 105 per cent (16,013 to 32,763) during the same period.
Kiat, a Statistics and Cognition tutor in HELP University College, described the jump as "statistically significant".
"The question is, would you consider this rise big enough to be regarded as a problem?"
Dr Anjli Doshi-Gandhi of the National Population and Family Development Board said the rising rates could signify a turn in the public's perception of the marriage institution.
"Those days, being divorced was embarrassing and families lost face. Now, people are more open. Times have changed.
"Marriages must be strengthened. We don't want what's happening in developed countries, where divorce rates are very high, to happen here."
The board, she added, counselled 700 to 800 troubled couples a year.
Psychologist Charis Wong pointed out the challenges in marriages today.
In self-arranged marriages, many young Malaysian men and women adopt an unrealistic, Western-style conceptualisation of love strongly influenced by the media, she said.
These couples enter into marriage with intense, passionate feelings but without exploring their beliefs and values about marriage.
They focused so much on the romantic aspect of love that they forgot that real love must be accompanied by commitment, which involved hard work by both parties, said Wong.
"The moment a marriage becomes challenging, they become disillusioned, frustrated and give up easily."
Wong recounted the many pending divorce cases she saw petitioned at the Kuala Lumpur family court when she was a practising litigation lawyer.
She said she was saddened by the "long list of petitions for divorce, the majority of which were from young couples in their 20s or 30s".
The National Registration Department registered 2,706 divorces among non-Muslims in 2002, which subsequently climbed to 5,647 last year.
Between 2006 and last year, the rates mostly stagnated at about 5,000 a year.
However, seven months into this year, there were already 7,428 cases registered, way higher than years before.
There was an appreciable rise in the number of divorces among Chinese and Indians this year, said Universiti Malaya's Associate Professor Dr Tey Nai Peng.
"The high ratio of divorce over the number of marriages is a cause for concern. The rising rate may be a contributory factor to falling fertility."
As for the Muslims, the Department of Islamic Development recorded 27,116 divorces last year, up from 13,937 in 2002. Over the years, the upward trend has been quite consistent.
The divorce rate was still much higher among Muslims compared with non-Muslims, with the former making up more than 82 per cent of total divorces, said Tey.
Divorce, while not completely free from stigma, was at least an option for women and a better alternative than an abusive relationship, said Wong.
"In traditional marriages, men and women had very specific, defined roles.
"When a man fails to carry out his duty and responsibility to his wife, the wife often does not see divorce as an option because of the stigma and hardship that will follow.
"On the other hand, when a wife fails to fulfil her duty to her husband in taking care of his domestic needs, she stands to be corrected and even punished by him and his family.
"Trapped in these inflexible roles, men and women may remain married, but unhappy as a couple.
"In today's marriage, however, both husband and wife need to accommodate and adjust to the changing role of women; from their traditional role as a child-bearer and homemaker to someone who is capable of taking over many roles previously in the husband's domain."
Banyak sangat dugaan di luar sana...pompuan semakin ramai...lelaki semakin sedikit...andartu bertimbun-timbun...