It might seem like divorcing after the age of 50 is rare, but it is actually becoming increasingly common. According to the National Center for Family & Marriage Research, the divorce rate for those over 50 doubled between the years 1990 and 2010, earning it the newly coined term “gray divorce.” While divorcing at any age can be difficult, considering the change in lifestyle that companies it and the stress of enduring the process, it is uniquely different when you are over the age of 50. Why? Well, you are past your prime income-earning years and likely looking toward retirement, which means the division of assets and property can have a profound effect on your future.
If you are considering a divorce and are over the age of 50, here are some important things to know that can help you through it:
- You are going to get pushed out of your comfort zone: Couples who are over 50 have also likely been married for years, probably decades. The prospect of divorce can be frightening and many are often afraid of being single after having had a partner for so long, especially if that partner was the breadwinner in the marriage. This is going to push you far beyond your comfort zone, but you should take this chance to reevaluate yourself and what you truly want out of life.
- You should ask for help: Divorce is a confusing time and can spark a combination of conflicting emotions, ranging from guilt, anger, excitement, and sadness. You might feel fine one moment and depressed the next. If you have friends who are still married, it might be difficult to find someone to talk to who knows what you are going through, but that does not mean you should deal with these emotions alone. Seek counseling and work through your emotions in a healthy way with a professional. Isolating yourself will only do you harm.
- Nearing retirement will make this a tricky situation: You and your ex-spouse are likely nearing retirement, so how you handle the financial aspect of your divorce is critical. There are ways to avoid a penalty for early withdrawal from a retirement account, but you need to seek help from an experienced and skilled divorce attorney to assist you through this. You might have to also make some lifestyle changes to adjust to the financial loss.
Ultimately, while this might seem like a time of great uncertainty, it is also the chance for you to embark on a fresh start. Create a new life for yourself and do the things you never had the chance to pursue before.
Experienced Florida Divorce Attorney
Choosing to get a divorce is never an easy decision, regardless of how necessary or amicable it is. If you are unsure of what to expect, this can make the path seem even more harrowing. At Ami L. DiLorenzo, P.A., we are here to provide clear answers to your questions so you understand every step of the process.
Contact our office today for a free consultation at (352) 437-2200.