In California and throughout the United States, younger generations often say they feel as though their elders really do not understand them. Times change and with it, people growing up in particular generations may have different worldviews than those who came before them. The Vietnamese community is no different; in fact, many young adults in the community say they struggle with issues regarding divorce because many of the elders in their community are still dead set against it.
The idea of divorce has traditionally been taboo in the typical Vietnamese household. However, data shows more and more spouses within such communities are choosing to go their separate ways, with approximately 16 marriages out of 1,000 ending in divorce. One group of analysts who studies cultural norms and behaviors says the changing of roles of modern day Vietnamese women, in particular, appears to have had a significant impact on the changing views regarding divorce.
Overall, Vietnam ranks among countries in the world with the lowest divorce rates. To the contrary, the United States ranks highest. Some analysts believe that fear of financial problems, as well as worrying that they will be looked upon poorly by their elders prompts many younger Vietnamese couples to remain in unhappy marriages.
Certain divorce issues cross all cultural barriers, such as having to work out child custody agreements if the spouses involved have children together. California is a community property state, so no matter what ethnic background a particular pair of spouses happens to have, their marital property will likely be divided 50/50 in divorce. An experienced family law attorney can provide much needed support if a concerned spouse has questions about state law or specific issues in his or her case.