Why Second Marriages Fail

by Jun 9, 2020

Is this your first marriage? Or your second marriage? Maybe your third marriage?

Studies show that in the U.S., the rate of divorce for first marriages has dropped to 40%. But the alarming statistic is the rate of failure for second marriages is 67% and for third marriages, it’s a whopping 74%!

Why do you think this is happening? Wouldn’t you think we would’ve learned from our mistakes? Wouldn’t you think we would be smarter, older, more mature and should know better and know what we want in a new partner?

What We Are All Looking For

Feeling lonely or afraid of being on your own is terrifying and can lead to jumping into a new relationship. Rebound relationships are quite common. Having someone give you so much attention and tell you how fantastic you are is very intoxicating. We’re just human beings and it’s natural to want to feel loved and desired, especially if we are the one who has been left.

And it is so easy to get into another serious relationship before the ink is dry on the divorce papers. It’s not that after your divorce you should not enjoy your life and have new friends and relationships. What is the reason for not getting into another serious relationships is that one needs time to do this work:

  1. Take time to process the grief and loss issues from the divorce.
  2. Take time to look at your role in the demise of your marriage. What did you learn from this?
  3. Take time to really evaluate this “new love.” Do you know this “entire person?” The good and bad with all their faults?

This is the “work” that must be done and what we do as divorce coaches do to help our clients no matter where they are in the divorce process.

So here are what the experts say are the 3 biggest reasons why second marriages fail at such a high rate:


Money is a big issue for many couples, but it’s even more troublesome in second marriages due to child support or alimony payments. When there are children involved, it gets even more complicated financially. I’ve seen many clients who are resentful about how much money is going out to their new husband’s children. It can become a real challenge if it is not discussed openly and honestly.


Many couples stay together “for the children.” That’s a topic for another email, but where natural children might keep a marriage together, step-children can be a divisive factor in second marriages. Many parents deal with the frustration of having step-kids. The biggest issue here is partners not supporting each other when it comes to dealing with each other’s natural children.


This really depends on the circumstances of the divorce. Typically, the person who was left, especially because of an affair, may be resentful and angry. They may be terribly unhappy that their ex is so quickly in a new relationship or remarried. They may even try to sabotage things to create emotional or financial tension for the new partners.

If you’re struggling with a divorce – whether it’s your first, second or third marriage, let us help you work through this so that you can feel confident moving forward into the next chapter of your life.

Contact our Divorce Coaches, Karen Dorsey and Carrie Doubts at Smarter Divorce Solutions.

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