Though national divorce rates have decreased over the past two decades, gray divorces have doubled. Gray divorces, according to researchers at Bowling Green State University, are more financially destructive for women than men. The financial reality for many divorcing women is economic devastation, with standards of living dropping by 45%. This statistic represents twice the decline found in younger divorced women.
Emerging trends for women in gray divorces
Trends show little “appreciable recovery on the wealth front” for gray-divorced women in the ten years after their divorce. Additionally, women are only eligible to access their ex-spouse’s social security benefits if they were married ten years or more. Here are some more trends revealed by this work:
- In 2010 643,200 Americans over the age of 50 divorced. In 1990, the number was 206,000. The 2030 projection stands at 828,400.
- The poverty rate for gray-divorced women over 63 is 26.9% (for men it is 11.4%)
- 22% of women and 37% of men re-partner during the ten years after a divorce.
Examining the emotional impact
A study from the Journal of Health and Social Behavior found that in comparison with widowed spouses, divorcing individuals showed higher levels of depression. It takes an average of four years for depressive symptoms to subside after a divorce. Remarrying or re-partnering tends to end depressive levels in a shorter period, but re-partnering rates are lower for women in gray divorces.
Taking control of your life
The emotional toll and financial losses of a divorce can make starting a new life a daunting task. A lawyer skilled in family law and gray divorces can help you to make sense of this challenging time and work for the compensation you deserve.