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Study Finds Increased Divorce Rates for Families With an Autistic Child to be a Myth

It has often been cited that the divorce rate for families with an autistic child approaches 80%, which is roughly double the rate for average first-time marriages in the U.S. However a recent study, discussed in a WebMD article, by the Center for Autism and Related Disorders at the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore finds that autistic children remained with both biological parents at nearly identical rates as children without autism.

This is encouraging family law news for parents with autistic children, who may have come across the 80% divorce rate statistic and felt that their marriage had little chance of survival. In fact, lead researcher Brian Freedman PhD said he searched for the original study that propagated the widely-believed 80% number but was unable to find it. This led him to believe that it originated out of pure speculation and was repeated enough that it became accepted fact without any supporting evidence.