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Auspicious dates fail to secure marriages

By Hu Min (Shanghai Daily)

10:52, January 25, 2013

(File photo)

Nearly 10 percent of Shanghai couples who tied the knot on the auspicious date of August 8, 2008, have divorced, according to the civil affairs department.

Some 590 couples who vowed "until death do us part" that day have split up. They are among the 7,189 couples who rushed to marriage registration offices across the city on 2008-8-8 only because the date has more "8" which sounds like "strike a fortune" in Chinese.

Also, 367 Shanghai couples who said "I do" on October 10, 2010 have bid each other goodbye. The date was deemed auspicious because "10-10-10" symbolizes "perfection in everything" for the Chinese. A record 10,500 couples tied the knot that day.

Four local couples who drew marriage certificates on January 4 have divorced even though the date sounds like "forever love" in spoken Chinese.

Lin Kewu, deputy director of marriage administration of Shanghai Civil Affairs Bureau, said the number of flash marriages and flash divorces is on the rise as their marriages lack a strong foundation. "They didn't take their marriage vows seriously," Lin said. "Many young couples do not know tolerance and parents' meddling only made things worse."

Leng Li, a marriage counselor, said those born after 1980 were pampered by their parents as the only child in the family. They tend to be self-centered and less tolerant.

Last year 44,364 couples filed for divorce in Shanghai, 13 percent more than in 2011 and the biggest rise in recent years.

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