The term ‘gray divorce’ refers to couples over the age of 50 getting a divorce who are typically members of the Baby Boomer generation. 

Divorces have doubled for couples over the age of 50.  But why is this happening after decades of marriage?

The Itch

You have heard of the 7-year itch but what about a 25-year itch or a 30-year itch?  After the kids have moved out of the house, and people become empty nesters, you no longer have your children to raise and focus on.  This often forces a couple to re-evaluate their marriage and themselves individually.   

Busy Life

People, throughout their marriage are busy taking care of their family, helping the kids do their school work, taking them to skating lessons or hockey games, taking care of the home, taking care of their garden, working, and well, living.  Couples are finding that they have lost their connection amid all the hustle and bustle of raising a family.  They now have different interests and different goals. 

Resentment

Many people, women in particular are resentful.  Why?  Well, it is usually the husband that was the breadwinner, living out their career, while the wife was at home taking care of the home and family.  Maybe the wife had dreams of a career, and had to put that on the back burner, and has become resentful of the husband working and her having to stay home.  Maybe she felt trapped, and now that the kids have moved on with their life, she has found her life has passed her by and now is the time she gets to what she wants.

Stigma Around Divorce

For many years, couples stayed together, even if unhappy, due to the negative stigma around divorcing or even for religious reasons. Many of these marriages died a long time ago, but people were ‘embarrassed’ or ‘ashamed’ to separate and move their separate ways.  Divorce trends are rapidly changing, and many people are just no longer okay with staying in unhappy and unsatisfying marriage.  

Women Are More Independent

Women are working more now than even ever before.  Not only that, but family laws have changed over the years to make the division of assets a fairer process between the two parties.  Women are happily walking away knowing that they will receive half the assets and wealth accumulated during the term of the marriage.

Blog posts are for informational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice.


Written by Marian Grande, Mediator
September 1, 2020

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