• Cover: November 26, 2014
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The Non-Starter Marriage

A look at the growing trend of unions that dissolve in less than a year, sometimes before the thank-you notes can even be sent out.

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  • We've all heard about the Starter Marriage: The marital training wheels that prime you for the real thing. But this is something singular. Call it the Non-Starter Marriage, the union that dissolves in less than a year, sometimes before the thank-you notes can even be sent out. It's the kind of bust-up we associate—almost anticipate—with celebrity unions. Katy Perry and Russell Brand: just over 365 days. Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries: 72 days. Drew Barrymore and Jeremy Thomas: 27 days. Britney Spears and her high school sweetheart: 55 hours. Even the seemingly down-to-earth Fred Armisen and Elisabeth Moss split in under a year (though legal red tape pushed the union slightly past the 12-month mark). And there's always that ticking clock in Hollywood: Who's next?

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    But what happens when civilians—regular folks who sit across from you in the office or at the Thanksgiving dinner table—get divorced before their first anniversary, and what makes them pull the plug so quickly? Had they been embarrassed to call the wedding off, and quickly the truth caught up to them, or was it something more complicated? What's really going through the minds of the already-divorcing newlywed?

The Non-Starter Marriage
A look at the growing trend of unions that dissolve in less than a year, sometimes before the thank-you notes can even be sent out.
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