Open Thread #751 » Dramabeans Korean drama recaps

Early 2022 has had a surge of Asian celebrity marriage news. One reason may be the result of two years of secret pandemic dating. Another could be that it was hard to hold a wedding during past lock down restrictions. In Korea, daily COVID positive tests top 300,000. To hold an outdoor wedding today, the ceremony is restricted to 99 people (only 49 if there is food service).

While celebrity marriages may be a positive sign for SK government’s fear of a plunging national birth rate, the statistics still show 46.8% of SK current marriages end in divorce. The ages with the highest divorce rate is men (45-50) and women (40-45). 38% of divorces are from couples who have been married for more than 20 years. 20% of divorcees have been married less than 4 years. The reasons are not economic: most cite personality conflicts, alcoholism or in the older couples, one who does not want to become an end-of-life caregiver.
In the past 20 years, the average age of the groom went from 26 to 32 years old. The bride went from 23 to 30. More Korean women (51%) do not believe marriage is a priority for them. Part of the reason is that more women value their career over traditional role of a housewife and mother. 44% of women under 40 stated they had no plans to marry.

These trends have been slowly being incorporated in k-dramas, especially single, female centric dramas that try to tackle ageism, sexism, and careers versus traditional roles. “Work Later, Drink Now” or “Thirty, Nine” were promoted as examples of this trend. But only network weekenders can guarantee fairy tale “happily ever after” endings. Or do they?

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