Understanding the implications of gray divorce in Oregon

More people over the age of 50 are filing for divorce in the U.S., and this may have certain implications for older Americans and their families.

It isn't uncommon to hear of a couple filing for divorce in Oregon or anywhere else across the nation. In fact, more than 50 percent of all marriages end in divorce, according to statistics reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The number of people 50 years of age and older who are filing for divorce, however, has grown substantially over the past 20 years. Known as gray divorce, the aging population of baby boomers has created a spike in the divorce rate. Not only does this have implications for older people who are suddenly single, but it has an effect on their families as well.

What is gray divorce?

A study conducted by Bowling Green State University found that the number of people filing for divorce after the age of 50 has doubled over the last 20 years. What causes people to file for divorce after 20 to 30 years of marriage? The American Association of Retired Persons reported that there are a variety of reasons for gray divorce, including:

• The kids have moved out of the house and couples no longer have anything holding them together.

• Couples retire and determine that they don't have any similar interests.

• People are more financially independent and are able to support themselves rather than rely on a spouse's income.

People are living longer after retirement, and may decide that they are no longer compatible with their spouse after years of marriage. Rather than live in an unhappy marriage, couples may choose to go their separate ways.

Implications of gray divorce

Although the children of gray divorcees are often grown and have children of their own, they can still have trouble adapting to news of their parents' separation, according to the Chicago Tribune. In some cases, children are trapped in-between arguing parents, and may experience feelings of guilt when visiting their parents. Adult children may find it difficult to handle certain topics, like their parent's dating life. Much like a younger child dealing with divorce, adult children of divorcees may have a strong loyalty to their parents.

Not all couples are financially independent in their later years. Some divorced spouses may depend on Social Security and alimony to make ends meet, while others may be forced back into the workforce.

Obtaining legal counsel

It can be emotionally and financially challenging to go through a divorce at any age. However, it can be especially difficult for older couples. You may have questions regarding property division, finances and alimony when filing for marriage dissolution. You may want to discuss your legal options with an attorney in Oregon. A lawyer may be able to walk you through the divorce process and help you make the decisions that are best for you.

Keywords: gray divorce, Oregon