As a divorce lawyer and family law attorney in Bergen County, NJ, and Monmouth County, NJ, I have witnessed several reasons why couples proceed with a divorce. They range from a lack of emotional support, addiction, and a host of other reasons. While there are several reasons that couples choose to go through with a divorce, I have noted (in my experience) three of the most common causes of divorce; being irresponsible with finances, communication issues, and adultery.


Money is definitely a common cause for divorce. It does not have to be the lack of money, however. When a frugal person is married to someone that likes to indulge, there will definitely be some tension. Incompatibility regarding finances is the major issue here. Even when there is enough revenue coming into the household, married couples in this predicament will still argue because of how each other chooses to spend (or not spend) money.

In order to get on one accord, I have found that it is best to set financial goals with your partner, stick to a budget, save money, and allow yourself to carefully splurge. As the saying goes, “There is no romance without finance.”


A relationship is nothing without clear, consistent communication. Without communication, in my experience, any relationship is bound to fail. It is important for married couples to set aside time to resolve issues, discuss differences, or simply check-in with each other to ensure they are on the same page. Every relationship has its ups and downs and love alone won’t address complex issues within a marriage. It is the ability to have honest conversations about what is not working, develop an action plan to resolve issues, and the ability to move forward that will correct any communication barriers you may experience.  

Also, having clear and open communication does not only have to occur when there is an issue that needs to be resolved. As mentioned before, it is recommended to check-in with each other on a regular basis–just to ensure your marriage is headed in the right direction. You may want to schedule weekly “appointments” with your spouse to ensure this occurs on a regular basis. Another rule of thumb to avoid communication issues is to avoid going to bed mad at each other, as this could lead to more complex and unresolved problems in the future.


There is no surprise that this is one of the common causes for divorce. Adultery, surprisingly, occurs for reasons beyond the lack of physical intimacy. There are many reasons why a partner may seek sexual gratification outside of their marriage. For instance, a couple might be having sexual intercourse everyday, but if someone feels ignored, they seek an emotional connection elsewhere. Some married couples feel everyday life is overly predictable and boring, so they risk it all to have a spontaneous affair because of the excitement it brings.

Regardless of the “excitement,” committing adultery is risky, irresponsible, and is a serious downfall to a marriage. Alongside financial issues, it is one of the most common causes of a divorce.

In conclusion, there are several factors that involve why married couples seek a divorce. You may have heard about irreconcilable differences being the leading cause of a divorce, but the differences are most often irreconcilable concerns with incompatibility with finances, lack of communication, and adultery. Divorce is a painful and stressful process that should not be taken lightly. To avoid having to go through this process, it is recommended to actively and regularly communicate, support each other emotionally, and be proactive with handling finances. On the other hand, if your marriage is over, take proper action to protect yourself and your family. Here is a previous article that I have written about seeking a top divorce lawyer. If you ever need it, I hope it helps.

Sheena Burke Williams, Esq.


This article contains general information and opinions from Sheena Burke Williams and is not intended to be a source of legal advice for any purpose. No reader of this article should act or refrain from acting on the basis of information included in this article without seeking legal advice of counsel. Sheena Burke Williams expressly disclaims all liability with respect to actions taken or not taken based on any content in this article.