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Some career paths bring pressure that leads to divorce

Various transitions in life can create stress in a marriage, and when left unaddressed, that strain can lead to divorce.

One particular strain currently playing a role in the separation of the political power couple Maria Shriver and Arnold Schwarzenegger was caused by transitions in both of their careers, the couple admitted to MSNBC.

Just as couples in the limelight experience career-related pressures, the average American couple experiences ups and downs throughout their chosen career paths that can lead to divorce.

In a statement written to the Los Angeles Times, Shriver and Schwarzenegger said, "This has been a time of great personal and professional transition for each of us. After a great deal of thought, reflection, discussion and prayer, we came to this decision together."

Though most couples won't endure the pressures of political and acting careers, there are some more common career paths that entail a fair share of pressure that might increase the risk of divorce.

The Washington Post reported on a study published in the Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology that looked at the divorce rates associated with particular occupations.

The study concluded that choreographers and dancers had the highest divorce rate, at 43.05 percent. This was followed by bartenders, who had a 38.43 percent divorce rate, and close behind them at a 38.22 percent divorce rate are massage therapists, according to Phillips and Company's discussion on 98.1 KYKY.

Among the top occupations for low divorce rates were engineers, clergy, podiatrists and optometrists.

The study, however, noted that the data didn't "reveal whether it's the nature of the jobs that lead to divorce, or if people prone to unstable relationships are drawn to certain professions," according to Astramatch.com.

Professional pressures bleeding into a marriage happen when a spouse loses a job, moves to a new job, when one or both retire or simply when the workload in the current job increases or decreases dramatically. The change in pace can cause a moment of reflection in one or both spouses, which in turn can lead to an assessment that for some makes divorce appear the most viable option, according to Joyce Morley, a psychotherapist and executive coach with Newsvine.com.

"Career change gives a lot of couples the opportunity to make relationship changes," Morley said. "Women usually say they're trying to find themselves, and for men it's usually about wanting something new, or to explore."

EMAIL: awhatcott@desnews.com