When people enter into the bonds of marriage, they vow to stay together ‘till death do us part.’ However, even after years of marriage, problems may occur that can cause a couple to part ways. Gray divorce is used to reference people who decide to separate after the age of 50-years-old, and the rates of this type of divorce are growing.
A study released by Bowling Green State University revealed that incidents of gray divorce may grow to over 800,000 annually by 2030. In 2009, the number sat at 600,000, or one in four, gray divorces every year. Researchers also found that people who were involved in their second or third marriages were more likely to divorce than those who were still in their first marriage.
What causes gray divorce? Some people believe that couples often become attached when they have children together and may build their relationship around their kids. As the kids grow and move out of the home, the couple no longer has that in common and tends to split apart. This also holds true for couples who focus on their careers while they are married. Once retirement comes, couples are forced to spend more time together and may realize that they no longer enjoy being with one another.
There are many repercussions of gray divorce, including financial issues involving retirement, 401k plans and term life insurance policies. If one spouse supported the other during the marriage, it can be difficult to resolve as well. However, mediation and counseling can be beneficial to those who are going through a gray divorce.