Marriages strained by COVID, separation requests up 60%

40% due to cheating, 30% for domestic violence

(ANSA) - ROME, JAN 14 - The COVID crisis and resulting lockdowns have strained Italian marriages with separation requests up 60% between 2019 and 2020, the Italian association of divorce lawyers said on Thursday.
    Of these, 40% of requests are on the basis of alleged marital infidelity, 30% for domestic violence and 30% due to other causes, the group said.
    "There is an evident stress brought on by the emergency," said the lawyers.
    They said the strain on conjugal relations had been exacerbated by a sudden loss of work, and by other COVID-induced problems such as the difficulties of children with distance learning.
    "COVID is undermining marriages across the country," said the association.
    "Requests for separation have risen exponentially, due mainly to enforced cohabitation, which is the source of all the main problems that are hitting couples," association president Matteo Santini told ANSA.
    "It's one thing to share weekends and evenings and another to share the whole day with all the problems stemming from the health emergency: health stress due to the disease, lack of work, living with children and their problems with distance learning.
    "All this leads to an emotional explosion that brings on a desire to be free, and to separation requests".
    Santini said that 40% of cases of separation were due to "the difficulty unfaithful spouses have in hiding their double lives when they are forced to live with their partners 24/7 in the COVID crisis" (ANSA).


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