While we're still waiting for science to tell us how to find the love of our life — and whether or not to wait until those shoes you've been coveting all season long go on sale — we now know when we'd divorce them. Turns out, like any good sale, divorce usually peaks twice a year.
A new study from the University of Washington has found that divorce has a pattern and it happens to be seasonal, as Refinery 29 reports. From looking at data in Washington state between 2001 and 2015, researchers found that after winter and summer holidays — in March and August, respectively — are the most popular times of the year to get divorced. That pattern also emerged in other states such as Ohio, Minnesota, Florida and Arizona, which "have similar divorce laws as Washington, but differ in demographics and economic conditions."
It's not hard to guess why most couples choose to divorce in March and August — the first peak time comes after families have had a chance to recover from the financial burden and familial obligations of holidays. Plus, according to a press release detailing the study, many couples look to the holidays as a chance to press reset. (See: New Year's resolutions.) "Troubled couples may see the holidays as a time to mend relationships and start anew. We'll have a happy Christmas together as a family or take the kids for a nice camping trip, the thinking goes, and things will be better."
On the other hand, so many couples could be divorcing in March not because they waited for the holidays to pass but because of the holidays themselves. December holidays can be especially stressful on couples as they're forced to blend into each other's families.
As for why August is another popular month to file for divorce, U of W sociology professor Julie Brines believes that the start of the school year adds an extra incentive to couples with children who want to solidify their custody arrangement and parenting schedule.
If only it was as easy to figure out the best times of the year to fall in love.
This article originally appeared on Glamour.