Divorce and the Over 60's
Whilst it's true that fewer younger people are giving up on marriage, research shows more people aged sixty and over are suffering relationship breakdown
Divorce rates in England and Wales are at their lowest for 26 years. Research by National Statistics shows that the number of people getting divorced has fallen for the third year running.
It seems long-term relationships are back in vogue as people recognise that love equals commitment, trust, support and friendship.
Whilst it's true that fewer younger people are giving up on marriage, the research showed more people aged 60 and over, and couples in their mid to late 40s, are suffering relationship breakdown.
People who have never experienced a divorce or separation usually can't understand how stressful, and painful it is. The emotional price of divorce is heavy.
There are as many reasons as there are people to explain why it should be that the older generations are choosing to divorce or separate. Couples in their mid to late forties are often facing their children leaving home, going from being a family back to a couple again is a difficult adjustment to make and many couples on their own for the first time in years may find they don't know what to say to each other or feel they have run out of common ground.
On the other hand, other couples are finding that their children are returning home because they are finding living away financially difficult. This too can strain a relationship to breaking point.
For some divorce or separation is triggered by a review of life at retirement - people are now living longer and expectations for retirement have risen.
Women in their sixties tend to be fit and full of life these days, as well as looking good. Having spent numerous years working hard at careers, as well as bringing up children, they may have plans for some "me time". Men may be looking for a quieter life away from the pressure of work
Part of the problem can be that couples have never discussed the fantasies and plans they have each made about retirement.
When couples describe why they chose to divorce or separate, usually both say they were looking for fulfilment, or a new identity or more freedom.
People who are married tend to be happier and live longer than those living alone, and even recently divorced people usually say that they would like to find love again and get married in later life.
However the number of twice-married men and women divorcing in 2007 has also doubled over nearly 30 years.
Those who do go on to find happiness are able to do so because they somehow find the strength to pull it all together and go on with their lives. Divorce is never easy. However, there is life after divorce or separation. Life can be good again following the breakdown of a relationship or marriage. Whether it's seeing a marriage or couple counsellor, taking a divorce recovery course or personal development work, life can be good again.
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