Splitting up later in life is becoming more and more common. The term coined “gray divorce” refers to spouses who divorce after age 50. In fact, over the past two decades, the divorce rate for spouses over 50 has doubled. For older couples, many aspects of divorce are frightening. However, the fear of the unknown should not keep you stuck in an unhappy marriage. We’ve put together a list of tips for everyone who is considering divorce, or currently going through a gray divorce.
It’s important to begin budgeting for your divorce as soon as possible. If you and your spouse share a bank account, consider opening your own specifically for divorce funds.
You will also want to begin taking inventory of your belongings. In long-term marriages, it is especially challenging to distinguish between separate and marital property. When possible, locate proof of things that you purchased separately from your spouse.
Check-In With Your Adult Children
You may be surprised how big of an impact divorce can have on adult children. While they will not go through child custody or child support issues, they are still witnessing the end of their parents’ relationship. They may try to hide any negative emotions, so make sure that you ask them how they are feeling and assure them that it is okay to be upset - no matter their age.
Prepare to Feel a Range of Emotions
When you have been with your spouse for decades, you’re bound to feel emotional about separating. Perhaps you’re excited about a fresh start and more independence. Maybe you are sad, down, or even feeling disappointed to call it quits. Perhaps you are feeling scared about being single again later in life. Maybe you feel at peace after years of contemplating divorce. Most likely, you’ll feel all of these emotions at some point, in some capacity.
Make sure that you give yourself time to grieve your marriage and understand that it is all part of the process of moving on.
Remember Your Future is Bright
Many older couples are scared to divorce because they fear being alone for the first time in a long time. Know that after divorce, there are many things to look forward to. You are free to any and all opportunities.
You may choose to:
- Move somewhere you’ve always wanted to live
- Go on solo vacations
- Develop hobbies you’ve always wanted to learn
- Make new friends
- Take time to get to know yourself
The world is your oyster.
Salt Lake City Divorce Attorneys
Our team at Lokken & Putnam, P.C. can answer all of your questions about gray divorce and the unique challenges you may face during the process. Even if you are just considering divorce, it’s good to speak with an experienced attorney. Contact us today to schedule a confidential consultation with our Utah family lawyers.