Relationships Quick Answers
What are the arguments against covenant marriage?
Several arguments have been made against covenant marriage by both conservative and liberal opponents.
Conservative opponents of covenant marriage are concerned that adoption of covenant marriage will stigmatize or weaken traditional marriage. Traditional marriage may be taken less seriously than covenant marriage. Critics of covenant marriage also argue that changing marriage laws opens the door for other challenges to marriage laws (e.g. who can legally get married).
Liberal opponents of covenant marriage argue that couples may face social pressure or pressure from members of the clergy to sign covenant marriage agreements. In addition, the restrictions on divorce could lead to nasty court battles when one spouse wants a divorce and the other does not. The limited circumstances in which divorce is allowed could also lead spouses to engage in activities, such as adultery, in order to get a divorce. Finally, the waiting period and marital counseling required for getting a divorce may make it difficult for women to leave abusive relationships and increase their chances of being harmed by their spouse.
Source: Kim Leon, Ph.D., Former Human Development and Family Studies, College of Human Environmental Sciences, University of Missouri-Columbia
Last update: Wednesday, August 20, 2008