Document Type


Publication Date

February 2021


Regardless of whether married individuals are actively pursuing divorce, at all stages of marriage, individuals can experience thoughts of divorce, which are often termed “divorce ideation” in the literature. However, with same-sex marriage only being legalized in 2015, the literature has yet to explore divorce ideation among individuals married to a same-sex partner. In this article, we used semi-structured, in-depth interviews with 28 married gay men and lesbians to explore how and under what circumstances gay men and lesbians think about divorce. We find that although a slight majority of participants had never considered divorce, many had, especially during periods of marital conflict. In addition, nearly all participants indicated that they would be willing to consider divorce under certain circumstances such as infidelity, the loss of trust and/or intimacy, and unhappiness with the relationship. We conclude by discussing the limitations of our research and directions for future research.

Publication Title

Journal of Family Issues