Gray divorce has increased steadily for years. In fact, according to Psychology Today, the rate of divorce for couples over 50 has doubled since 1990.
Here is a look at why people are deciding to leave their marriages after decades.
1. A shift in priorities
Since the 1960s and 1970s, a cultural shift has taken place enabling people to focus more on their happiness and satisfaction. This also enabled major changes in long-held beliefs about whether marriages must last a lifetime.
2. Empty nest syndrome
Some married couples live unhappily for years. Once their children leave home, their differences can become more noticeable. They finally have the time to spend with one another but realize that they have different hobbies, retirement priorities and emotional needs.
3. Women entering the workforce
Since women are working in higher numbers than at any other time throughout history, they have gained financial independence. This has enabled women to leave unhappy or abusive situations that they would have been unable to escape during the early 20th century. Gone are the days when ladies felt forced to stay in bad situations out of economic necessity.
4. Hope for the future
With people living longer comes hope for a better future. Those who feel unsatisfied with their relationship may decide to end their long marriages and seek the happiness they thought they would experience the first time around.
When a married couple feels unfulfilled in their relationship, divorce can represent a chance to start over, regardless of age.