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Empty Nesters Beware

2 min read
Empty Nesters Beware

You and your spouse have worked hard providing for your family and raising your children. You have got them through high school and now the last one has left home and is off at school, working some place or perhaps married. Whew is finally over and now there is time for just you and your spouse to relax and start to enjoy being the two of you. Chance at marital bliss once again? Whoa, not so fast. You might be headed to the big “D” (divorce) instead.

According to a New York Times, the divorce rate for couples 50 and over has doubled since over a half century ago. Based upon the Census Bureau’s American Community survey in 2011, 15.4% of couples over age 50 were divorced, 2.1% were separated, and 13.5% were widowed.

What are some of the factors leading to marital demise? Based upon my own observations as a practicing divorce attorney it comes down to a couple of things. First, so much energy was focused on their children that they did nothing to keep their relationship strong. They grew apart. Strive to keep your marriage strong. Take trips together without your children, even when they are young. Believe me, they’ll survive. Secondly, many baby boomers are on the second or third marriage. IF they are healthy and active and the relationship has become stale or burdensome there is a stronger likelihood that the individual will divorce again. Third, watch out for retirement. Being together all the time, when you haven’t been in the past, can be stressful. Find some hobbies each of you can pursue on your own, as my mom would say: “let there be space in your togetherness.” However, make sure you schedule time to be together as well and pursue mutual interest.

Generally, there are greater implications when one is older and getting a divorce. These implications can be added pressure on the children and family. The children and other family members probably (hopefully) like both of you. They won’t know how to deal with you now you are not couple. Stress on finances, and dividing assets like investments, social security, retirement accounts, and tax implications, all have greater significance and ramifications as an older couple. Generally, speaking you have acquired more.

Hopefully, you will have wonderful marriage now that the kids are gone. It really is a time to reconnect and enjoy one another. No more pressures of child rearing. More disposable income, right? You’re not paying for school, braces, dance, and the list goes on and on. However, if your marriage happens to be once of the statistics you should seek competent legal representation to insure you are getting what you deserve.

An experienced divorce attorney will work closely with you to understand your needs, review your rights and options, consider creative alternatives, and prepare a sound legal strategy for your divorce and family law case.

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