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Is divorce among older people common?

| Feb 10, 2021 | Divorce |

Many false assumptions exist about divorce in Illinois and the rest of the United States. One idea might be that a couple married for 20 or 30 years will stay together. Such a sweeping generality overlooks statistics revealing that “gray divorces” are on the rise for people over age 50.

Older spouses and divorce

It bears pointing out that some older couples might marry later in life, and the marriage could be someone’s second or third union. Sadly, the troubles that previously plagued prior marriages, such as an abusive nature or gambling problems, might undermine a current marriage. Not all gray divorces, however, involve someone with a history of relationship troubles. Even those together for a long time may feel that divorce reflects the better path forward.

Empty nest syndrome” might play a role in the divorce. In some marriages, children living in the home could provide the “tie that binds” and keeps a marriage, even a strained one, together. Children may stay in the home until their 20s and then move out. Without the children keeping the marriage together, the union falls apart.

Couples drift apart

There are other reasons why a marriage can fail. People may change over the years, and so might their circumstances. Spouses may develop new interests and find that they share less and less in common. The casual drifting apart could lead them to break up.

Age might bring new financial concerns about retirement, and couples could find that their differences center on financial matters. Maybe one spouse takes retirement savings more seriously than another, so an irreparable rift develops.

A family law attorney may advise a spouse intending to dissolve a marriage but unsure where to start. The attorney may cover several areas of concern during the initial consultation and offer guidance for the next steps.