Divorcing couples over the age of 50 may be both excited and anxious about being on their own again after many years of marriage. These types of divorces are called gray divorces, and their rates are increasing globally.
There are many reasons for the higher numbers of gray divorces. Women are more financially independent than they were in the past, and both men and women are living longer. There is often still plenty of life to be lived for single people over age 50.
As with any divorce, there will be several financial and practical issues to be considered in a gray divorce, that a qualified professional can help with. These include decisions on health insurance, retirement accounts, children or estate planning matters. Knowing you will be financially solid after your divorce will help ease much of the stress and uncertainty.
Looking toward the future
Along with these factors, it is important to consider your mental and emotional health during and after your gray divorce. Several years, or even decades, may have passed since you were single, and being independent again can be exhilarating, but also scary.
No matter what happened between you and your spouse over the years, maintaining an amicable and respectful relationship with them can help tremendously, particularly if you have adult children. Many divorces today can be accomplished without having to enter a courtroom. Collaborative divorce and mediation are non-adversarial methods of resolving a divorce, while avoiding the cost and stress of courtroom litigation.
Creating or rekindling friendships is one of the biggest things that you can do to help you through your gray divorce. Social connections help us flourish as human beings, and if you find yourself feeling lonely post-divorce, joining a local social group, taking a new class or volunteering are great ways to help reconnect with the world and build new relationships.
Gray divorce is often the right choice for older couples who recognize that their marriage has run its course. Although the decision to divorce may be difficult, it can serve both spouses best interests.