A ‘gray divorce’ can lead to a happier future

Sometimes even if a couple in their 50s or 60s has been married for 20 years, 30 years or more they will find that as empty nesters they have drifted apart or they may be facing retirement and find that they have different goals in life. In such situations they may decide that they want a divorce. This is not uncommon and is referred to as a “gray divorce.” The U.S. Census Bureau reports that the divorce rate is the highest at approximately 43% among men and women between the ages of 55 to 64. These divorces do not need to be contentious and oftentimes an amicable split is possible if a couple heeds the following tips.

Take some time for self-reflection

Before filing for a divorce in Noblesville, it is important to take some time for self-reflection. You have been married many years and may have children or even grandchildren who will be affected by the divorce. It is important to ask yourself what you hope will happen in your divorce, so you can focus on the best-case scenario. You will also want to consider what you will gain and what you will lose if you leave.

Make a clean break your goal

In some ways a gray divorce can be easier than a divorce earlier in life. You may have a better understanding of what issues are important and what issues you do not need to worry about. With age and life experience making a clean break is possible and advisable by some professionals.

Understand your post-divorce relationships

While some couples may have stayed in an unhappy marriage “for the kids” some find that divorce is harder on adult children than minor children. Moreover, you will have to consider your future connection to long-time friends. It is important to keep in mind that divorce is normal.

Understand your post-divorce finances

While child custody and child support may not be on the table in a gray divorce property division and spousal support will take center stage. This may be especially crucial to those who stayed out of the workforce while married to care for the family or if one spouse handled the finances while married leaving the other spouse relatively in the dark. Educating yourself about your finances post-divorce is essential.

Consider mediation

Mediation can often be preferrable to the long, drawn out trial process. In mediation you and your spouse will work with a mediator to reach an out-of-court settlement in your divorce. The mediator is a neutral third-party and is not a decision-maker. Instead, they facilitate discussions between you and your spouse to resolve the issues you face in your divorce. You can still be represented by an attorney even if you choose mediation. Many couples find that mediation leads to a satisfactory outcome in their divorce because they had a say in the final settlement.

Learn more about divorce in Indiana

Moving forward towards a happier life can happen in a divorce if you are willing to cooperate and compromise with your ex. This post is for educational purposes only and does not contain legal advice. Our firm’s website on family law may be of interest to those who want to learn more about this topic.