After marriage, a couple’s life will grow and change as they walk the road of life together. It may come as a surprise, then, to learn that the U.S. is seeing a significant increase in the number of couples divorcing after age 50. Known as a “gray divorce” there are many reasons why a couple in New Hampshire who have been married for decades will pursue a dissolution. Moreover, a gray divorce may look different from the divorce of a couple in their 30’s or 40’s.
What causes a gray divorce?
You may wonder why a couple that has been married for so long would suddenly decide to call it quits. There are a variety of reasons why a couple may seek a gray divorce. They may be empty nesters who have realized that they have grown apart over the years. If they were staying together “for the children” the fact that their children are grown may mean they will seek the divorce they may have wanted for many years. In addition, a person’s life goals and morals may change as they age and an older couple may find that the way they picture spending their remaining years do not match their partner’s, leading to a gray divorce. These are only some reasons why a person would seek a gray divorce.
Legal issues in a gray divorce
The legal issues couples in their 50’s and older face are not necessarily the same as the issues their younger counterparts face. For example, a couple divorcing in their 30’s may be raising children together. This means issues such as child custody and child support are very important. However, it is likely that the children of a couple in a gray divorce are grown and out of the house, making issues such as child custody and child support irrelevant. However, for these older couples, issues such as spousal support and property division take center stage. This is especially true with regards to the division of retirement accounts and with regards to the support of a spouse who may have been out of the workforce while married.
No matter what the reason, it is important to remember that no one deserves to remain in an unhappy marriage no matter what their age or how long they have been married. Divorce can be sad and scary, but it often leads to a better future for all involved.