Divorce After Fifty: Issues to Consider and “Gray Divorce”

Divorces among mature adults, those over the age of fifty, are becoming more common than they have ever been in the past. These divorces are sometimes known as “gray divorce” and are often accompanied by challenges that younger divorcing couples do not face.

One of the biggest dividing factors in these divorces is one or both spouse’s retirement. Retiring from a career after two, three, or even more decades in the workforce is one of the greatest lifestyle changes that occur in one’s lifetime. Friction, misunderstandings, and previously-ignored interpersonal issues can be magnified after a retirement, sometimes driving couples to divorce.

Consider the following issues and talk about them with your spouse before either of you retire. By acknowledging any issues that may arise, you can prepare yourselves to handle them. Consider speaking with a licensed relationship counselor about these issues as well to gain a better understanding of them. Divorce at any age is hard and whether it is the right choice for you depends on how deep your issues run and how equipped you and your partner are to manage them.

After Retirement, Relationship Problems Can Come into Focus

While you were engaged in your careers, aspects of your incompatibility may have seemed minor. For example, if you were much more engaged with raising your children and handling the housework while your partner spent the majority of his or her time outside of work on hobbies, this disparity could have been easier to ignore because you were distracted by work. Now, without work to hold your interest and likely without minor children to attend to, you might find yourself growing resentful of your significantly larger household burden.

Couples May have Conflicting Expectations for Retirement

Your partner wants to travel the world, you want to sell the house and move into an active adult community. When couples do not discuss their plans for life after retirement, each partner may develop his or her own expectation and then feel disappointed, resentful, or even angry when his or her partner’s ideal does not match this.

Without Outside Interests, Couples May be Unable to Relate to Each Other

For most working people, a career is their main use of energy and interest outside the home. Many people feel lost after they retire, especially those who do not have independent hobbies or interests. Maintain friendships with individuals other than your spouse and make time to focus on your own hobbies and personal development.

Sometimes, despite working hard to remain in a functional relationship after retirement, a divorce is inevitable. When this is the case, you need quality legal advice and representation as you take the next steps to end your marriage. Call The Law Office of Eric B. Hannum Esq., LLC. today at 732-370-9596 to schedule your legal consultation with us and begin working on your case. We proudly serve divorcing couples in Monmouth, Ocean, Burlington, and Mercer counties. Let us guide you through the next steps of the divorce process.

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