Overall, divorce rates have been trending downward in the United States. This doesn’t always mean there are more happy marriages, of course. A big reason is the rise in cohabitation that means many young couples opt not to get married or divorced, even though those relationships still end.
However, there is one interesting age group that has seen the opposite trend. Those who are 50 years old and older have seen an increase in their divorce rates. This is known as gray divorce, and it is becoming more and more common.
Why are more gray divorces happening?
The big question many people ask is why these long-married couples are divorcing, and there are numerous factors. For one thing, older couples are more likely to marry than to simply live together, so that plays a part. If they want to break up, divorce is the only way to do it.
Another potential reason is that people choose to stay together until the children grow up and move out. Someone may want to get divorced at 35 but not want to leave their kids without a two-parent home. So, they wait. That doesn’t mean they spontaneously decided to get divorced at 50.
Finally, the social stigma regarding divorce has greatly lessened. Many older couples may have felt pressure to stay married when they wanted to get divorced years earlier. Now, they feel like that pressure has eased enough for them to actually do what they want.
A complex situation for divorce
If you are in this age group, divorce can be complicated due to high asset levels, lengthy marriages and many other factors. You must know all of your rights to come out of your divorce with what you need to begin a new life.