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Saturday, Oct. 8, 2011

More married couples in Tohoku area seek counseling following March 11

Kyodo

Sendai — A marriage counselor in the disaster-ravaged city of Sendai says many people are rushing to seek advice on whether to get a divorce following the March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

Many marriages are apparently coming under considerable strain amid the ensuing hardship, according to the counselor.

The number of those seeking advice on divorce began increasing from April and totaled well over 100 by mid-September, up nearly 40 percent from a year earlier, according to the counselor, Tokiko Nakahata. "Many of them were already in a strained relationship with their spouses before the quake," she said.

Most wives tend to complain their husbands are self-centered and refuse to do chores, while a majority of men want to break up because their wives have become mentally unbalanced, Nakahata said.

A woman in her 40s from Natori, Miyagi Prefecture, told Nakahata that her husband, who is in his 50s, began to pay less attention to his own family and has gone to his mother's place as he is concerned about her safety. Nakahata advised her to stay married as the pair have kids.

Many people now seek divorce "presumably because they have become more observant about their spouses' character traits after looking at the way they have reacted to the disaster," he said.



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