ROANOKE CO., Va.—Although many are waiting later to get married, the divorce rate is still high. A new government study gives us the odds in marriage.
It's usually pretty positive inside a wedding gown shop and choosing the perfect wedding gown is a pretty big deal. But, as Mary Leifken knows picking a partner in life is much more important. "My first shot but my second chance all at the same time. So, we're looking forward to many years together. It's just amazing that it happened for both of us," explained Leifken.
Leifken is divorced. She'd been on her own about five years before running into an old acquaintance again, Tommy Meloche. "About two and a half years ago, he called and asked if I was playing out, playing music out anywhere and I said yes I am. But I'm always open to new players. Why don't you come on by? We'll kick around a few songs and see what happens," she said. They've been inseparable since and are planning to marry on April 21st. "That fairytale story. That Cinderella story, it's true. It can happen." Leifken explained.
But a new report from the Centers for Disease control and Prevention, shows roughly half of first marriages aren't a fairytale. The study shows that for women there's a 52% chance that a first marriage will last 20 years. For men, it's slightly higher at 56%.
"If you know it's right, you know. You know." After being a bridal consultant for 11 years, Valerie Gray said shopping for a dress tells a lot about the bride and possibly the marriage. "I can tell whether or not the family is happy about the occasion. I can tell whether or not the bride is happy about the occasion. Whether she's excited. If she's smiling," Gray said.
That study also cites education as a marriage survival factor. Men and women with college degrees have better odds of staying together. Statistics aside, true love for a bride or groom' it's often just in their face. "I do tear up a lot about it. Because I've waited forever for this and I wish everybody, men and women of all ages, I wish them this," Leifken said.