“Gray divorce” refers to divorces between spouses over the age of 50. In the early 2000s, research indicated a decline in divorces among spouses over the age of 20 and an increase among spouses over the age of 50. Spouses who divorce later in life, closer to the age of retirement, often encounter obstacles that are unique to their age group, particularly when it comes to finances. This begs the question: why are so many older couples choosing to end their marriage when they are no longer in their prime income-earning years?
Why is Gray Divorce Becoming More Common?
In many ways, gray divorce is substantially more difficult for spouses to endure. It can have a profound impact on their ability to retire or to remain retired, putting them in a financial predicament as they approach the golden years of their lives.
Here are some of the reasons why, despite these challenges, gray divorce is on the rise in the United States:
- Couples grow apart: Many spouses over the age of 50 will have spent a large part of their marriage raising children. When their children leave the family home to pursue their own dreams, spouses may be left wondering what to do next. In many cases, couples cannot recognize the person they married and they drift apart once they no longer have their children in the home.
- Managing finances: For many couples, financial management is a regular point of contention. Whether a couple argues about their income, one spouse’s financial irresponsibility, or other issues, these issues can create enough friction to jeopardize a relationship. Regardless of age, poor spending habits and other financial issues are often a major cause for divorce.
- Someone was unfaithful: As spouses age, their sexual compatibility might change. A loss of intimacy might lead a spouse to stray and cheat, which could ultimately destroy a marriage.
- Longer life expectancies: Life expectancy is higher now than it was for previous generations, and because we have more time at our disposal, unhappy spouses may be less willing to remain in unsatisfying marriages. Many couples realize that they can divorce at the age of 50 or 60 and still have many more years ahead to pursue happiness elsewhere.
- There is less of a stigma attached to divorce: There used to be quite a bit of stigma attached to divorce, which is why so many couples shied away from it. However, now that our society is more accepting of divorce, more spouses are comfortable ending their marriage because they know they will not be socially ostracized for it.
Contact an Experienced Divorce Attorney Today
If you are getting a gray divorce, it is crucial to hire a divorce attorney to protect your future and ensure you are able to live out your remaining years in comfort. At Beaulieu-Fawcett | Newell Law Group, P.A., our top-rated divorce attorneys have the experience and insight necessary to guide you through every step of the process while protecting your interests.
Contact our law office today at (561) 600-5711 to schedule a free case assessment. Our divorce attorneys will negotiate when possible and aggressively litigate when necessary.