Screen Shot 2014-10-09 at 3.50.35 PMIs bigger always better? Well maybe sometimes, but apparently not necessarily when it comes to wedding rings. Studies show that the biggest, flashiest, most expensive rock might actually be a predictor for divorce. And if you follow that up with a big, fantastical wedding? Well, you’re probably doomed.

Today points to a recent study out of Emory University  titled “‘A Diamond is Forever’ and Other Fairy Tales: The Relationship between Wedding Expenses and Marriage Duration,” by Andrew M. Francis and Hugo M. Mialon. Researchers surveyed 3,000 heterosexuals, who had once been married and discovered some interesting finds.

First, they found that men who dropped between two and four thousand dollars on a ring were 1.3 times likelier to divorce than those who paid $500 to $2,000. Can you imagine what happens for people who pay more than 2 G’s?! However, this doesn’t mean that men should get a ring from a gumball machine. Rings under $500 also led to higher divorce rates.

They also investigated wedding price tags, and found that women with weddings that cost more than $20,000 divorced 3.5 times as often as women who paid $5,000 to $10,000.  “Relatively low spending on the wedding is positively associated with duration among male and female respondents.”

Good news! You can invite all your friends and have a lovely honeymoon. The study discovered that high wedding attendance and a honeymoon (regardless of cost) “are positively associated with marriage duration.”

The final verdict? Everything in moderation. The researchers concluded, “Our findings provide little evidence to support the validity of the wedding industry’s general message that connects expensive weddings with positive marital outcomes.”

So, no need to break the bank when it comes to the ring and the wedding. Of course this study probably applies to regular people, not multimillionaires who can break the bank because it’s Tuesday and not have to worry about the bill on Wednesday. The point is that you don’t need to show off for the world with the largest ring and the fanciest wedding. Focus instead on the marriage, not the wedding and the shiny things.

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  • Brianna

    It sounds like people who are sensible with their money, and have a great support system or a real, true social network will have successful marriages.

    • I agree However I might add those who start out with the least amount of bills have the least amount of financial pressures on them giving them a greater chance for marriage success.