According to the Christian Science Monitor, American parents are spending more time on the job and cutting back on precious family time (June 2). It reported that 40 percent of American employees now work evening hours or on the weekend—or both. The strain this puts on a marriage is considerable.
According to sociologist Harriet Presser, “Parents working nights are more likely to separate or divorce than those on other work schedules.” And even if it doesn’t sever the marriage, it undoubtedly weakens the lines of communication. Eighty percent of American married couples now consider their biggest marriage problem to be communication.
Children suffer too. Parents who work odd hours, especially if they both work, find it more difficult to make sure their children are properly supervised. They also miss out on valuable family experiences and activities. “Dinnertime is the most important family ritual in togetherness time,” Presser noted.