The study focused on data from 2 million Swedish families between 1995 and 2000, 11 percent of which had commutes to work that were 45 minutes or longer – and researchers warn that the study contained mostly information for male commuters with a wife and small children.
Why would a long commute lead to divorce? Researchers believe that a longer commute means less family time – and less time for one parent to spend helping with childcare and household responsibilities. This could lead to resentment from the spouse who is likely home with the children during the week. Generally, having one spouse engage in a long commute and the other stay home may reinforce gender roles both at home and in the workplace. In addition, commuting itself can be stressful, expensive, and time-consuming – three issues that could make the commuting spouse irritable and strapped for time when he finally walks in the door at the end of the day.
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