While the overall divorce rate in Texas and nationwide has stabilized, the divorce rate among older Americans is increasing. In fact, nearly 25 percent of all divorces are now "gray divorces," meaning the couple is over the age of 50.
According to a study published in the Journal of Woman & Aging, there are several reasons why gray divorces are on the rise. One factor is that the baby boomer generation is aging. In 1990, there were less than 64 million U.S. adults aged 50 or older, but there were 99 million in that age bracket by 2010. The average life expectancy of Americans has also increased. In 1950, men lived an average of 65.6 years, and women lived an average of 71.1 years. However, men now live an average of 76.1 years while women live an average of 81.1 years. This gives Americans more time to consider divorce.
In order to understand the reasons older Americans choose to get divorced, the author of the study interviewed 40 men and 40 women who divorced over the age of 50. She found that both men and women tended to cite infidelity and mental health issues as the root causes of their divorces. However, after those two issues, men and women differed on the reasons they chose to end their marriages. For example, men often pointed to money and child-rearing disagreements while women often pointed to addiction issues or emotional and/or verbal abuse.
A family law attorney could assist Texas residents who are considering divorce. After reviewing the details of the case, a lawyer could offer legal guidance and help negotiate important divorce agreements on asset division, spousal support and more.