Why Are More Older American Couples Divorcing?

Divorces are increasing among older Americans.

The Dallas Morning News recently had an interesting story about how more older couples are divorcing.

According to the news outlet, late-life divorce is on the rise. In 2014, people ages 50 and above were twice as likely to go through a divorce as they were in 1990. The statistics come from the National Center for Family and Marriage Research at Bowling Green State University in Ohio.

Additionally, researchers reported that for people over the age of 65, divorce rates are also higher. Interestingly, at the same time, divorce rates among people in other age groups have decreased during the period.

The paper noted that the one reason for the rise in divorce rates might be that older people are more likely to be involved in second marriages. “[T]he divorce rate is about 21/2 times as large for those who have remarried and are often grappling with blended families or greater financial challenges,” the Morning News reported.

Some experts said that one factor might be people living longer, with them not wanting to stay in unhappy marriages for longer periods. “Now, let’s say you’re 50 or 60. You could go 30 more years. A lot of marriages are not horrible, but they’re no longer satisfying or loving,” one sociologist told the paper. “They may not be ugly, but you say, ‘Do I really want 30 more years of this?’”

In addition, the Morning News noted that changes in society for women might be influencing late life divorce, saying that women initiate 60 percent of divorces after the age of 40. Previously, some experts said that women might have been staying in relationships due to economic reasons. With more women in the workforce, this may be changing.

“Part of the shift is that now women have been liberated, empowered, moved around, know how to get what they want. They are increasingly breaking up the relationships to find someone else or to be on their own,” one woman told the Morning News.

Divorce For Those in Unhappy Marriages

While it is fascinating to read about why older Americans are more likely to get divorced, it does not mean that separations do not occur at all ages.

If you unhappy with your marriage, you should not let the toxicity surrounding it bring you down. Speak to a counselor or seek the advice of an attorney about getting a divorce. Many people find that divorces are therapeutic, as they are able to escape bad relationships that plague their work, family and social life.

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