“They marry for better or worse, for richer or poorer, for co-pays and deductibles.”
Most of us have heard the age-old warning “Don’t marry for money” at least once in our lives, but how many of us are familiar with the phrase “Don’t marry for health benefits?” An article in the New York Times called Health Benefits Inspire Rush to Marry, or Divorce suggests that as the cost of health care rises and many individuals find themselves without adequate insurance, couples are making marital decisions based on their health care situations. One couple married shortly after meeting so that one partner could have health coverage; another couple seriously contemplated ending their marriage in order to qualify as low-income and receive health care subsidies from the state. One woman admitted to staying in an unhappy marriage because she was unable to afford health insurance, and by staying married to her husband could ensure she was adequately covered.
When we think of marriage, we tend to think of love, security, children, and let’s be honest, fifty years of telling him to pick up his dirty socks and hand over the remote. So when did marriage become linked with health benefits, and will co-pays and deductibles one day be slipped into our marriage vows? Before you take that walk down the aisle, know that there are other options out there for women without health coverage. As a starting point, check out Healthier and Wiser: Women Without Coverage Part I and Healthier and Wiser: Women Without Coverage Part II, the first two posts of a WISER blog series that addresses some of the main health care issues women encounter.