You are on page 1of 31

INTRODUCTION

I propose to conduct a survey on the topic Is female independence the main reason

behind the increasing number of divorce rate? This survey will be in context of

Bangladesh.

The rate of divorce is rising due to increased female independence. High rate of divorce

is a common problem in western countries but in Bangladesh it is also following the

trend. It is suggested that overall improvement in womens position in terms of financial

and social status has changed the scenario. Womens position is getting stronger both

financially and emotionally. Now they are more conscious about their rights, education

and job facilities are giving more independence these days. Women's work outside the

home" has brought about a revolutionary change in the overall social outlook. They now

claim equal rights as men, but as a consequence it is affecting marriage relationships.

This overall change in womens roles is leading to an increase in divorce rate due to

inequality in acceptance of womens freedom.

There is a strong correlation between divorce rates and married women's involvement in

the work force. Married women's increased participation in the work force may have

many consequences. Some of the consequences that result from married women working

are that there is less time spent at home, less time of interaction with family, and

changing goals for the future. These consequences may negatively affect the marital

relationship and contribute to the increasing divorce rates because some people may be

reluctant to adapt their traditional beliefs about the roles they think men and women

should perform.

1
More recently, changes in economic conditions, social norms, and in values (such as an

emphasis on togetherness has shifted to an emphasis on individuality) have contributed to

an increase in married women's involvement in the work force. Also large societal

occurrences are forcing women and men to change their roles.

Again, all the traditional ideas about women working that are still present can directly

affect the marital relationship. Many consequences follow from increased involvement of

married women in the labor force, but the reason these consequences effect the family in

a negative way is because the role of women has changed but traditional ideas about the

role of women has not changed at an equally rapid pace. Many men still prefer a

traditional marriage in which the husband is dominant and the wife play a supportive role

by taking care of children, house and other family members. Typically, men who have

difficulties with their wives working may be men who have been socialized to accept

traditionally defined gender roles. Thus, for men, when the roles shift and values do not,

their self concept and their self esteem suffer.

Considering current trends in divorce rates and the increase in married women's

employment are likely to continue, and understanding of their linkage may facilitate

amelioration of any further negative consequences and propel future adaptation and

understanding between the couples. So, in my research paper I want to find out why

divorce is influenced by female independence.

2
BACKGROUND
Number of divorce is increasing significantly in Bangladesh and the trend has been

steady for the last two decades. Divorce is something that has become a dramatically

more common event in our society. Women are getting better education and job

opportunities and hence are gaining more confidence to stand out. They no longer want to

depend solely on men, freedom of choice and speech helps them fight male dominance.

They are getting more financial freedom which they could not enjoy even from husbands

contribution. There is an overall change in social outlook towards the concept of marriage

and divorce. It is considered that womens outside involvement is affecting marriage

relationships adversely. There is an assumption that married women were not committed

to working and only did it to supplement her husband's income. However, the 1970s and

1980s showed a change in attitude about women, work, and family, especially regarding

the acceptance of wives working. It is expected that women's labor force participation

will remain high. Keeping a marriage relationship intact is both the partners

responsibility but sometimes egocentric differences create problems. Traditionally it is

the husbands who are considered the head of the family. Now due to increased social

awareness women are getting conscious and exposed to claiming equal rights. Financially

women are in a better position and this gives them the incentive to speak up against any

odds. Unfortunately, too much independence is making them overambitious and reluctant

to compromise and family values are being side tracked which is affecting marriage

relationships. Even if women are managing both family and work responsibilities side by

side it is the men who are not being able to cope up with the upcoming role of women as

an independent and equally deserving partner.

3
Society's cavalier attitude towards marriage and divorce is not a positive phenomenon

and has perpetuated a cycle of failed marriages and a lengthy list of associated social

problems detrimental to children and to adults. Divorce is not a solo act, nor is it a

victimless phenomenon. There is no debate that divorce has brought enormous physical,

emotional, and economic harm to families and to society at large.

4
AREA OF RESEARCH

My research paper mainly focuses on what percentage of men are happy to marry a

workingwomen, why a men do not want his wife to work outside and what the

workingwomen think about this and also whether the female independence is the main

reason behind the increasing number of divorce rate.

The focuses of my research area are:

What percentages of men are married to house wives and their divorce rate?

What percentages of men are married to workingwomen?

What are the problems that workingwomen face in their family life?

What percentages of workingwomen are getting divorce?

Is female in dependence the only reason behind increase in divorce rate?

Where the divorce rate is higher- a men getting married to workingwomen or

a men getting married to a women who has started to work after her marriage?

What percentages of men are married to housewives and their divorce rate?

I am focusing on this area because I want to find out the percentage of men that are

married to housewives, in order to discover whether they are happy with their wives or

are facing problems. I also want to figure out whether the housewives are taking good

care of their families, children, and maintaining good relationship with other relatives. If

the housewives want to work outside will the men support them or will they force them to

stay at home with their families. Overall, I want to locate the percentage of men that are

married with house wives are they happy with their choices and also the percentage of the

divorce rate of the men who are married to housewives. For this, I will conduct a survey

5
on men who are married to housewives. Here, I am also focusing on why a man does not

want his wife to work outside.

What percentages of men are married to workingwomen?

I want to do research on this area because I want to find out the percentage of men that

are married to workingwomen in order to find out whether they are happy or their choice

is making their life miserable. The women that are working outside, will it be possible for

them to make their husbands, family and other relatives satisfied with their incomes. I

also want to figure out why the women are given the chance to work outside although it

is enough if the men of the family earns.

I want to discover why the men support their working wives and also the men who or not

support or coordinate with their wives. Overall, I want to find out whether the preference

of working wives, as a life partner is beneficial or not and also whether it is creating any

problem on their married life.

What are the problems that workingwomen face in their family life?

I want to find out people who are married to workingwomen do they have their each

others support. Do they have understanding in running the family or not. Do the wives

help their family with their earned money or not. Do they have time for each other or not.

Do they have to quarrel or not. Are their children growing up well or not? Do the

workingwomen have freedom or not.

What percentages of workingwomen are getting divorce?

6
Here, I am focusing on the percentage of workingwomen who are getting divorce due to

their professional life. Which part of their professional life is mainly responsible for their

divorce and what is the main conflict with her husband. I want to find out this from my

survey and also from some articles.

Is female in dependence the only reason behind increase in divorce rate?

I want to find out that whether female independence is the main reason behind the

increasing divorce rate or there are other reasons. Sometimes people think that the

women is working she is independents so; she is responsible for her divorce. Here I want

to find out whether this idea is true or false. To discover this I have conducted a survey,

taken two interview.

Where the divorce rate is higher- a men getting married to workingwomen or a men

getting married to a women who has started to work after her marriage?

Finally, I want to focus on where the divorce rate is higher. When a men married to a

workingwomen or when the woman starts to work after her marriage life and the

mentality of man about his working wife. In these case whether the female independence

is only responsible for the divorce. From my three target group I find out that. Here I will

also go through some websites.

7
HYPOTHESIS
I think in todays world most women in our country want to work. Many of them are also

working outside. Womens position is getting stronger day by day. Women now want

equal rights in the society and in the family. But, a man does not want to give equal rights

to a woman. These things make difficulties and conflicts in married life which are mostly

responsible for the increasing divorce rate.

8
METHODOLOGY
For my research paper, I carried out a survey of a representative sample of thirty men and

fifteen women of Bangladesh in Dhaka. In order to do the survey, I divided my sample

into three target groups. These are:

Men married to workingwomen.

Married workingwomen.

Men marred to housewives.

I have divided my data collection in two parts:

Primary Data: Survey, interview.

Secondary Data: Magazines, articles from newspaper, web sites.

Primary Data

Survey: Three target groups were there. Sample size for each target group was fifteen.

Questionnaire comprised of general questions involving independent women and the

effect on marriage relationships. The main objective was to evaluate peoples opinions

and views on the issue of increasing divorce. Marriage relationships, financial

independence, effect of womens outside involvement, mens attitude towards this

change, divorce laws and social outlook were focused in the questions.

Interview: Interviews were designed for a selected group of experts. Interviewees

included a married couple and a divorced woman who is currently enrolled in high

official post.

9
Secondary Data

Magazines and paper articles: Magazine and paper articles were mainly selected from

female magazines which focused on rise in womens participation in office work and its

effect on marriage relationship. Magazines articles provided miscellaneous data that

supported the fact that financial freedom is a key factor. It allows wives the freedom

which they could not have even with generous allowance from their husbands. It boosts

them to higher level of expectation and thats when the conflict comes. Men most of the

time can not put up with this over ambitious attitude of women and this leads to

separation or divorce.

Web sites: I have also gone through different websites to find out whether female

independence is the main reason behind divorce rate and different peoples opinion about

this matter.

10
DATA PRESENTATION
In this part of my research paper, I am going to present the data that I have collected from

my survey. Following are the data that I have collected from surveying my target group -

Men married to workingwomen.

Target group Men married to workingwomen

Sample Size: 15

Answer

No. of a b c d

Questio

n
1 4 4 4 3
2 2 4 5 4
3 7 4 2 2
4 1 5 5 4
5 5 3 3 4
6 7 4 2 2
7 6 3 2 4
8 3 0 12 0
9 4 3 2 6
10 4 6 2 3

Caption: This table represents the survey results of men married to workingwomen.

Following are the data that I have collected from surveying my target group - Married

workingwomen.

11
Target group Married workingwomen

Sample Size: 15

Answer

No. of a b c d

Questio

n
1 4 5 6 ..
2 7 6 2 ..
3 5 3 4 3
4 9 2 3 1
5 2 4 9 ..
6 8 2 5 ..
7 2 4 9 ..

Caption: This table represents the survey results of married workingwomen.

Following are the data that I have collected from surveying my target group Men

married to housewives.

Target group Men married to housewives

Sample Size: 15

Answer

12
No. of a b c d

Questio

n
1 6 4 5 ..
2 2 5 3 5
3 3 4 6 2
4 4 2 6 3
5 8 1 4 2
6 4 2 3 6
7 6 3 2 4

Caption: This table represents the survey results of men married to housewives.

13
GRAPHICAL REPRESENTATIONS & DATA ANALYSIS

Following are some of the graphical representation and analysis of the data that I have

collected from the target group (men married to workingwomen).

Question # 3

Are you facing any kind of problem with her professional life?

Answers No. of Respondents

Yes, she spends too much time at office. 7 (47%)

Yes, but I support her because its her 4 (27%)


profession.

No, my wife is giving me enough time. 2 (13%)

I cannot give enough time to my wife, so I am 2 (13%)


happy that she is working.

14
In order to find out what percentage of men are facing problems with their wifes

professional life, this question was asked to the men who are married to workingwomen.

It was found that 47% men are facing problems as the wife spends too much time at her

office and these percentages of men were unhappy with their wifes professional life.

27% of men say that they are facing problems but they support their wife. These

percentages of men are happy with the wifes professional life. On the other hand 13% of

men say that are not facing any problems because the wife gives enough time. Another

13% say that as they cannot give enough time to the wife, they are happy that the wife is

working and not demanding any from them.

From here I have found that, maximum men are unhappy with the wifes professional

life. Very few men feel proud about his wifes professional life.

Question # 7

Do you support your wife as a working woman?

Answers No. of Respondents


Yes, because she is a source of income. 6 (40%)
No, but she prefer to do so. 3 (20%)
No, because she will know more about her rights. 2 (14%)
Yes, because she not only help me financially but in 4 (26%)
other ways also

15
In order to find out does the men married to workingwomen support their wives this

question was asked. It was found that 40% men support their wives, as she is a source of

income, 20% does not support their wives but as she prefers do so, therefore, they do not

argue with that. The remaining 26% support their wives because she not only helps them

financially but in many other ways like giving decision, making decision and etc. The

remaining 14% do not support their wife because they think that the wife will know more

about her rights.

but in other ways From here I have found that, the maximum number of men just

supports their wife only because the wife helps them financially. Another percentage

support because the wife not only help them financially also. Again, a another percentage

of men do not support their wife because they think if the wife work outside she will be

self dependent and will know more about her rights.

16
Question # 8

Who bears most of the expenses of your family?

Answers No. of Respondents


Myself. 3 (20%)
My wife. 0
Both me and my wife. 12 (80%)
Other family members. 0

In this question I asked men married to workingwomen that, who bears the family

expenses.80% of men say that they share the responsibility with their wife. 20% of men

say they do not take any help from their wife.

So, from this question I discovered that, maximum men share the family expenses with

wife and they want a working woman as a wife, where as only 20% men do not share,

that means may be they do not want to spend wifes money or may be they do not like

workingwomen.

17
Question # 10

Why you think your wife should work?

Answers No. of Respondents


She will be self-dependent. 4 (27%)
She will help me financially. 6 (40%)
She will have self respect. 2 (13%)
I do not want her to work outside. 3 (20%)

In order to find out why men want dowry this question was asked to men married 50% of

the men say that its hurt their self respect. Another 30% men agreed that their wife help

them financially. 20%say that they some extent. 13% of men say that they want their wife

to work because the wife will have self respect. But 20 % of the men say that hey do not

want their wife to work.

From this survey I have found that maximum men want workingwomen because their

wife will help them financially. Very few men want their wife to work to become self

dependent and to get self respect.

18
So, from the questions asked to the men married to the workingwomen I have found that

maximum percentage of men want a working woman as the wife will help them

financially. Very few men think that to work and to become established are their right.

Some men even do not want their wife to work just because they will know more about

their right. Another percentage of men just support their wife only because the wife wants

it. Very few men support their wifes professional life and give importance as they think

about their profession.

19
Following are some of the graphical representation and analysis of the data that I have

collected from the target group (married workingwomen).

Question # 1

Which would you prefer first family or career?

Answers No. of Respondents


To me it will be always my family. 4 (27%)
Career is more important than family. 5 (33%)
It is both family and career. 6 (40%)

This question was asked to the workingwomen who are married also. The question was

about which think they prefer most, career or their family. 40% women say that they

prefer both family and career. 33% say that career is more important than another thing.

27% say that to them family is always important.

So, for this I have found that to maximum women both family and career are important.

Some women just think that career is more important. These parts of women are

maximum time busy with their profession. Another part of women think that only family

is important but the percentage of these types of women is very less.

20
Question # 2

Do you think that you would have got better working opportunities if you were free
from marriage or any other family relations?

Answers No. of Respondents


I want to be free from these types of relations. 7 (46%)
To me career is important.
No, then there will be no adventure in life. 6 (40%)
To some extent I think that. 2 (14%)

While answering this question 46% of the married workingwomen say that they want to

be free from these types of relations. 40% of the women say that they do not want this

because then there will be no adventure in their life. 14% of women to some extent think

that this statement is true.

From this I have found that maximum women think that family or other responsibilities

are simply barrier for career. Some women want these relations as well as the career. And

some women sometimes think that it is true to some extent.

21
Question # 4

Are you heavily financially dependent on each other?

Answers No. of Respondents


We share our financial load. 9 (60%)
My husband does not want to share my money. 2 (14%)
I have to take all financial load of the family. 3 (20%)
I keep my salary into the bank; I do not spend it for 1 (6%)
my family.

This question was asked to the married workingwomen that whether they are heavily

financially dependent on each other. 60% of the married workingwomen say that they

share the financial load with their husbands. 20% of the women say that she alone is

taking the whole financial load. 14% women say that their husband do not want to share

the financial load with them. Where as, only 6% women say that they keep their salary in

to the bank, and do not share it with the family.

From the conducted survey I found that, maximum percentage of women wants to share

the financial load with the husband. They want to contribute some thing to the family and

22
the husbands also support them. Very few women do not want to contribute anything to

the family. Again, some men also do not want the wifes money to run the family.

So, from the survey which is done on married workingwomen I have found that, women

now a-days has become more conscious about their profession. Maximum women want

to become a good wife and also a good working woman. They want to be perfect women.

They want to share the financial load with the husband and want to contribute something

to the family. Some women want to be free from these types of relationships. They want

to be more professional. Some times men who are married to these type of women

compromises or support their wife. However, maximum time the men do not do so and

the conflict start from there and ends with divorce.

23
Following are some of the graphical representation and analysis of the data that I have

collected from the target group (men married to housewives).

Question # 1

Do you think divorce rate is increasing due to female independence?

Answers No. of Respondents


Yes, it is the main reason. 6 (40%)
No, it is not the main reason. 4 (27%)
To some extent it is true. 5 (33%)

In order to why men do not want their wife to work outside this question was asked to the

men who are married to housewives. The question was about do men think that divorce

rate is increasing due to female independence. 40% of the men say that female

independence is the main reason behind the increasing number of divorce rate.33% men

says that to some extent they think that this is true. But only the remaining 27% think that

divorce rate is not increasing due to female independence.

So, maximum number of men married to the housewives thinks that female independence

is the main reason behind the increasing number of divorce rate .So; they do not want a

working woman as a wife.

24
Question # 3

Why is your wife not working?

Answers No. of Respondents


She wants to work but I do not allow her. 3 (20%)
She does not want to work but I want. 4 (27%)
We both do not want. 6 (40%)
My wife wants to work but my family will not 2 (13%)
work.

This question was asked to the men married to the housewives to know why they do not

want their wife to be a working woman. 60% of the men say that both the husband and

wife do not want that. 27% of the men say that they want the wife to work but the wife do

not want it. 20% of the men say that the wife wants to work but they will not allow that.

The remaining 13% say that the wife wants to work but the family will not allow that

one.

So, in this case the wives are not working because both the husband and the wife do not

want that. Another percentage of men want their wife to work but the wife does not want

that. Very few men do not want their wife as a workingwoman. They want their wife to

work.

25
Question # 7

Do you think if your wife starts working it will have any influence in your family?

Answers No. of Respondents


Yes, it will create problem in our family life. 6 (40%)
Yes, but other members of my family can manage 3 (20%)
it.
It will not create any problem. 2 (13%)
It will not create any problem but my wife is not 4 (27%)
interested.

In order to find out whether it will create any problem is the wives starts to work this

question was asked to the men marred to the workingwomen. 40% of the men say that it

will create a problem if their wives start to work outside. The second highest percentages

say that it will not create any problem but the wife is not interested. 20% of the men say

that it will create problem but the family can manage it. But only 13% of the men say that

it will not create any problem.

26
That means, in maximum cases both husband and wife do not want that the wife as a

working woman. Very few men want their wife as a working woman. In these cases

women also do not want to work outside. They only want to take care of the family.

By conducting the survey in this target group I have found that, in maximum case both

the husband and wife do not want the wife to work. Maximum percentages of the wives

also prefer to stay at the home and do the household works and take care of the family.

Very few women want to work but their husbands do not allow that. The problem is with

these percentages of men. They do not want their wife as a workingwomen but the wife

want to work. In these cases female independence becomes the main issue.

27
LIMITATIONS

It was projected that more magazines and printed materials would be consulted for the

research but enough resources were not available.

The size of the sample was also a limitation. As the sample size is small there is a chance

of more error. Due to the sample, size of the result may vary from the original answer

which we may get from the whole population.

28
CONCLUSION
There has been a considerable increase in divorce rate in the past few years. Experts say

that divorce is a result of growing individualization in the society. Female independence

enhances individualization which imbalances the traditional ideas of marriage and related

concepts, leading to an increased divorce rate. Economic independence acts as a catalyst

for divorce. Womens working connection is making them more careers oriented, they

become too engrossed in official attachment, which sometimes hampers marriage and

family relationships. Not all women are moving towards workingwomen status and not

all workingwomen are facing divorce problem but it is creating a huge difference in the

overall social outlook towards the concept of divorce. Feminists argue that women have

more to gain from divorce than staying in oppressive marriages. Economic independence

and grater equality at work, improved birth control and smaller families, higher

expectations of marital relationships, and the isolation of the nuclear family are all seen

as factors, which have contributed to the rise in women seeking a divorce.

Unfortunately, enough concept of divorce is getting increasing acceptance worldwide. It

is supposed that one-third of all marriages are likely to end in divorce. The survey

concluded that many people think that divorce is a good solution to marriage problems

when they were asked if divorce is morally or ethically unacceptable or not.

The changing roles of married women working produce many consequences to affect the

marital relationship because men's and women's ideas about traditional gender roles have

not changed as rapidly as the roles themselves. This disproportionate change in roles and

values may create situations that are adverse to marital harmony.

29
BIBLIOGRAPHY

1. Barua, Aditi, Divorce Revolution. The Daily Star. 7 April, 2001:4.

2. Alam, Muntasir. Teacher. Personal interview. 26 March.

3. Alam, Raisa. House wife. Personal interview. 26 March.

4. Sultana, Rahima. Executive. Telephone interview. 28 March.

5. http://www.bjreview.com.cn/200445/Forum-200445.htm

6. http://www.isnie.org/ISNIE98/Binner-Dnes.doc

7. http://www.gender.go.jp/english_contents/e01.html

30
31