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Long Distance Marriage: Experts Explain Why Commuter Marriages Are On The Rise

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Would your marriage last if you lived thousands of miles away from your spouse?

According to data from the 2006 U.S. Census, more than 3.5 million married couples -- a 30 percent increase since 1990 -- are living apart for reasons other than a legal separation.

But if the point of getting married is to be together, why are so many couples nowadays living miles apart?

Tina Tessina, author of "The Commuter Marriage," says that the job market is to blame for the increase in long-distance marriages. "It does affect marriages and it does create more commuter marriages. People drive longer distances to get a job. People are laid off from work and they have to relocate to get a job," she recently told local news station WOAI.

Other experts suggest that the shaky job market isn't the only thing keeping couples apart. The real estate market may also have a lot to do with it.

Karla Bergen, Assistant Professor in the Communications department at the College of Saint Mary in Omaha, told WOAI, "The real estate market is really depressed, so the other partner ends up staying behind until the house sells."

While couples -- and often their children -- must struggle with the task of maintaining long-distance marriage, that doesn't mean these families are doomed. Modern technology can help couples stay in touch and maintain constant communication, which Bergen says is key.

Watch the video above to learn more about long-distance marriages.

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