Communication key to saving marriages, Sharjah conference hears
A lack of communication is the key reason Emirati marriages break down, experts say.
SHARJAH // A lack of communication is the key reason Emirati marriages break down in the first three years, experts say.
A person’s character, behaviour and interfering families were also reasons divorces occurred, a conference heard this week.
“Sharjah registered 186 divorces in 2014, while last year 125 divorces occurred, including 82 cases of divorce within the first three years of marriage,” said Dr Fakir Al Gharaibeh, associate professor of social work at Sharjah University.
The majority of divorces involved Emiratis between 25 and 30 years of age, he said.
“Emiratis said that families’ involvement in the newlyweds’ affairs were one of the main reasons for divorce. Also, doubts and lack of trust between couples were a factor in ending the marriage.”
Other factors that contributed to divorces were a couple’s intimate relationship and financial problems, according to Dr Al Gharaibeh.
Meanwhile, a family guidance director at Sharjah Court named poor dialogue and a lack of respect between couples as sources of strife.
“Some couples file for divorce for silly reasons. We have a case about a couple who filed for divorce over a disagreement about naming their newborn child,” Dr Radiyah Al Raesi said.
The director said that family problems and divorce had a severe impact on offspring.
“Children of divorced parents often blame themselves, they are prone to depression and psychological illnesses.”
In Sharjah, Emirati couples who have children and want a divorce have to sign an agreement in court detailing custody, visitation rights, financial support and housing arrangements for the children before they can continue the divorce process.
A family and marital clinical psychologist said marriage at an early age was a potential problem and might result in a break-up. “The youth think that marriage means freedom, couples going out and having fun,” said Dr Eman Alamari. However, “they are not aware of the responsibilities and the effort needed to build a successful marriage”.
Experts called on Emirati couples to turn to counselling and psychologists for help in resolving their problems, instead of family members.
They also recommended training courses for couples about to get married.
They also called on the media to highlight common marriage problems and ways to overcome them.