Many young couples want to get divorced due to “materialistic” lifestyles and avoid having children due to financial pressures, experts said at a conference on cultural and family values.
Speaking at the event Tuesday, Nguyen Thi Minh Huong, deputy head of the Women’s Union, said “fidelity” and “harmony” in marriage are in decline.
Divorce rates are rising as young people are influenced by “open, materialistic lifestyles,” she said, pointing to the fact the divorce rate almost doubled from 1% in 2009 to 1.8% in 2019.
Urbanization and industrialization, and job and income changes have significantly impacted family relations, and conflicts over property and economic interests even lead to crimes, she said.
Nguyen Huu Minh, head of the Institute for Family and Gender Studies, said women still mainly take care of household work with their partners not sharing the burden. It means they have little downtime, which affects their health and development, and decreases the quality of couples’ relationships, she said.
The number of divorces has been increasing year after year, and the rate of women initiating divorces is also rising, a sign that “the effects of the market economy are worming their way into family life,” she said.
The consequences of divorces include the “lack of comprehensive development” for children, she added.
Tran Tuyet Anh, head of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism’s family department, said the fact that some people marry late or simply do not want marriages or kids is primarily because of societal expectations regarding jobs, finance and child-rearing costs.
Dang Thi Hoa of the Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences said progressive values need to be actualized through equality between family members, especially males and females and husbands and wives, through democratic discussions on all aspects of family life, including labor distribution.
“We need to get rid of inequality in attitudes towards men and women’s infidelity.”
Families should focus on communication and discard prejudices with regard to the roles of family members, she added.
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