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Chinese couples have “5-year itch” marriage crisis

seven-year itch, marriage crisis

The "seven-year itch" has turned into a "five-year itch" among Chinese couple who stand to experience a marriage crisis between three and five years after tying the knot, Beijing News reports, citing a recent marriage report. The "seven-year itch" is the psychological theory that happiness in couples starts to deteriorate after seven years together, increasing the chances of a break-up. 


Couples who have been married for three to five years are the least happy, with 11.1 percent saying they would not stay with one another in the next life while another 8.9 percent say they would not consider marriage at all, according to "Chinese marriage status report in 2015."


The study, jointly released by Peking University and Baihe Marriage Research Institute, found that women, especially those who have kids, feel more pressure and less happy than men, for they have to work, take care of children and the elderly, buy groceries and do the cooking as well as most household chores.


Extra-marital relationships have equally occurred among men and women, accounting for 20 percent each, with nearly 10 percent of surveyed couples admitting that both have had relationships outside marriage.


Zhou Xiaopeng, president of Baihe Marriage Research Institute, said the "itch" indicates that couples are more demanding in marriage than before and the costs for extra-marital relationships or a divorce are becoming increasingly lower so that many now seek a "replacement" rather than "fixing the problems" as a solution.


The two-month survey, conducted both online and offline, collected nearly 80,000 effective samples, covering respondents in 31 provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions, as well as Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan.



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