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What Is Grey Divorce and Why is it On The Rise?

Sitting on sofa together and looking to opposite sides.

When people initially think of a divorce, they may envision a younger family with children. However, it is becoming increasingly common for older couples to file for divorce. This phenomenon has been dubbed "grey divorce." There are several reasons why grey divorce is now on the rise. This blog will help explain those reasons.

The Numbers Behind Grey Divorce

Before discussing why grey divorce is on the rise, it is important to understand the numbers behind that increase. A 2014 paper, discovered that couples divorcing in the over-50 age group had been exponentially increasing. Even more specifically, this number has more than doubled for married individuals 65 or older.

In a 2021 report, the number of grey divorces occurring in the United States was still high. In this report, the Census Department disclosed that 34.9% of all divorces from the previous calendar year were in the 55+ age range. The numbers reported from this group were twice the rate of every other age group surveyed.

These numbers demonstrate just how much grey divorce has increased in recent years.

Why Grey Divorce is Increasing

There are several different reasons why grey divorce has been increasing in recent years. Bush & Taylor, P.C. can help explain these.

Life Spans are Increasing

One of the major reasons why grey divorce is becoming more common is that people are living longer and healthier lives. With people living longer, they also often have more time to pursue their own interests and hobbies. This can lead to feelings of boredom or resentment in a marriage if one spouse feels like they are sacrificing their own happiness for the sake of the relationship.

Less Taboo Views

In a previous blog, we discussed how views of divorce are changing. As laws regarding divorce have changed over time, it has become easier for couples to file. With more and more couples seeing divorce as an option to make a positive change in their lives, opinions of the process have also changed.

No Children at Home

In addition, many couples who divorce later in life have already raised their children and are now Empty Nesters. With the kids out of the house, these couples can find that they have little in common and decide to go their separate ways. There is also the common thought of staying together for the children's sake. While the intention behind this idea may be good, it does not always end positively.

Financial Struggles and Stressors

Furthermore, studies have shown that couples experiencing financial stress are more likely to divorce. This can often be the case with grey divorcees because they may be nearing retirement and worried about money. If a couple is having issues with money, this can lead to more contentious communication or feelings of resentment.

Finding New Connections

Finally, social media can also play a role in grey divorce. Sites like Facebook allow people to reconnect with old friends and flirt with potential new partners. This can lead to feelings of dissatisfaction in a relationship if someone feels like they are missing out on something by being married.

Finding the Help Needed at all Ages

There are many reasons why grey divorce is on the rise in America. From empty nesters feeling bored in their marriages to social media causing discontent, it's no wonder that older couples are choosing to end their relationships at increasing rates. If you're considering a grey divorce, it's important to talk to an experienced attorney who can help you navigate this complex process.

Reach our office today at (757) 926-0078 to schedule a consultation.

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