According to the American Bar Association, grey divorces make up 25% of all divorces. Given that grey divorces occur later in life, they often involve unique challenges and complexities.
But why do grey divorces happen? What factors contribute to this phenomenon? Learn more about what grey divorces are and their causes.
Grey divorce refers to the dissolution of marriages involving couples usually in their 50s or older who are often married for several decades. The color grey is symbolic of the later years of life, hence the term. While the overall divorce rate has decreased, the rate of grey divorce has seen a significant increase over the years. It is a trend noticed not only in the United States but also globally as.
The reasons behind grey divorces
Many factors contribute to the rising incidence of grey divorces, including the following:
- Empty nest syndrome. Once children leave home, couples often find they no longer share common interests, leading to feelings of disconnection. The lack of a common focus can expose marital problems ignored or sidelined while raising children.
- Changing societal norms. Divorce has become more socially acceptable and the stigma associated with it has lessened over time. This acceptance, combined with more financial independence, especially among women, has made it easier for older couples to contemplate divorce.
- Retirement. The shift from a daily work routine to spending considerable time together in retirement can put a strain on the relationship. This drastic change in lifestyle can lead to conflicts and dissatisfaction.
Another reason behind grey divorce is the increased life expectancy. People are living longer, healthier lives, which may lead to a reevaluation of their long-term happiness and fulfillment.
Grey divorce is becoming increasingly common due to a variety of factors. Understanding the reasons behind a grey divorce can help society better support those going through it and mitigate its potential negative effects.