RICHMOND, August 7, 2002 ( – Traditional families, where couples “share a traditional interpretation of gender roles” are the least likely to divorce according to one of the most comprehensive divorce studies ever conducted.

Mavis Hetherington a University of Virginia psychology professor emeritus, followed some 1,400 families for as long as 30 years and records her observations in “For Better or for Worse: Divorce Reconsidered,” (W.W. Norton & Co., January 2002; with co-author John Kelly).  Hetherington and her colleagues have identified five types of marriages and their potential for divorce.  – Pursuer-Distancer. Risk: highest. Typically, the wife raises problems, the husband dismisses them.  – Disengaged. Risk: high. Emotionally distant individuals who don’t need intimacy, lack mutual interests.  – Operatic. Risk: high. Tumultuous and volatile, marked by cycle of fighting and sex.  – Cohesive/Individuated. Risk: low. Shared responsibilities, autonomy; see marriage as a refuge.  – Traditional. Risk: lowest. Couple shares a traditional interpretation of gender roles.  See the coverage in the National Post:{B6F00DD0-D31D-4409-B1B8-DF584E1CCE3C}