Divorcing After 50: How Gray Divorce Affects Your Health

DIVORCE CAN BE TOUGH ON health, no matter your age. Legal uncoupling is listed as the No. 2 stressor on the Holmes-Rahe Stress Inventory, a scale that predicts which life events are likely to cause a stress-induced health breakdown within two years.

And for people age 50 or older, whose divorce rates have doubled since 1990, divorce may be even harder on their health. “What I see among older patients is that divorce can have myriad psychological and physical consequences, especially for those with already existing medical problems,” says Dr. Andreea Seritan, a geriatric psychiatrist and professor of clinical psychiatry at the University of California—San Francisco.

Divorce rates for people younger than age 50 are higher (about double) than they are for seniors. But younger couples’ divorce rates aren’t seeing dramatic increases. For 40-somethings, divorce rates are only slightly higher than they were in 1990. For people younger than 40, divorce rates have actually fallen.

Full story at US News

Senior Divorce: Now What?

AMONG U.S. ADULTS AGES 50 and older, the divorce rate has roughly doubled since the 1990s, according to a Pew Research Center report. What has been called “gray” divorce is often attributed to the fact that people are living longer. But there are other factors at work driving this.

Why the Uptick?

The blessing and curse of a longer life is that many people are re-evaluating. The idea of staying in an unhappy situation for the sake of whomever and whatever is no longer appealing when faced with possibly 30 more years of life. People want to live that life.

There is a reduced stigma in society toward divorce, and baby boomers are no stranger to it. Plus, remarriages tend to not last as long as the first attempt. Among all adults 50 and older who divorced in 2015, 48 percent had been in their second or higher marriage.

Full story at US News