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Marriage Minutes: Danger May Lurk for Couples Who Splurge On Wedding Ring and Ceremony
Economics professors at Emory University discover the price threshold for weddings and engagement rings that correspond to a greater likelihood of divorce.


When the honeymoon is over, the looming debt of an expensive wedding and engagement ring can increase marital stress.


When it comes to the wedding, it was found that spending above $20,000 increased the hazard of divorce 3.5 times compared to spending $5,000 to $10,000 as reported by women.”
The following is a news item selected by the Hitched editors during the week of October 09, 2014.

A Bling Ring Might Hint At Future Divorce

Weddings are a business, and that business of big weddings and shiny rings might be hurting your marriage. Two economics professors at Emory University in Atlanta surveyed 3,151 individuals in the U.S. who, at some point, had been married and found that there's an inverse relationship between the amount a couple had spent on their engagement ring and wedding ceremony, and the duration of their marriage. The researchers found that men who spent between $2,000 and $4,000 on an engagement ring had 1.3 times greater hazard of divorce compared to those who spent between $500 and $2,000. When it comes to the wedding, it was found that spending above $20,000 increased the hazard of divorce 3.5 times compared to spending $5,000 to $10,000 as reported by women. Spending less than $1,000 on the wedding lessened the hazard of divorce for both men and women.

The economists were also able to associate the increased spending with increased stress about wedding debt—not surprisingly. While correlation isn't causation, there does seem to be a link between couples who spend a lot on their wedding, the immediate stress the debt brings to their marriage, and an increase in the likelihood of divorce.

This didn't hold true for all markers, however. Women reported a greater divorce hazard when less than $500 was spent on an engagement ring, and spending more than $8,000 dollars on the ring actually lessened the divorce hazard. Being able to spend that much on a ring might indicate other positive factors such as a higher education level, which has long been associated with better marriage outcomes. Fun fact that's included in the report, "prior to World War II, in Western countries, only 10% of engagement rings contained a diamond. By the end of the century, about 80% did.

Married Couple Win Nobel Prize for Brain GPS

Three scientists won the Nobel Prize in medicine earlier this week, a U.S.-British scientist John O'Keefe and husband and wife Norwegian scientists May-Britt Moser and Edvard Moser. The prize is for their discovery of the brain's "inner GPS," which helps us navigate through the world. In 1971, O'Keefe discovered that certain cells in rats would activate when they were in a specific place in a room. In 2005, the Mosers identified the "grid cell," which generates a coordinate system for precise positioning and path-finding.

A CBS News article, quotes the Nobel Assembly explaining the importance of this discovery saying, the brain's positioning system may "help us understand the mechanism underpinning the devastating spatial memory loss" that affects people with Alzheimer's disease. The CBS story goes on to say that these discoveries "have also opened new avenues for understanding cognitive functions such as memory, thinking and planning."

In addition to the Nobel prize, we suspect Mr. Moser now has a lifetime pass of never having to ask for directions too.


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