People in North Carolina who are 50 and older are getting divorced at a higher rate than they did in 1990, but there could be health, social and economic complications for divorce in this age group. Divorce can lead to chronic stress and depression, and these problems are linked to health conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and more.
Experts suggest that people may have higher expectations for marriage than previous generations, and this combined with women’s economic independence along with longer life expectancy could be driving the divorce rate up. Older adults may also be more likely to be remarried, and second marriages are more vulnerable to divorce. For older men, the social consequences of divorce may be particularly acute. Older women are more likely to suffer economically after divorce.
However, the post-divorce picture is not inevitably bleak. Many older adults are happier after divorce, and they go on to pursue other interests in life. It can help if they are mindful of their health, exercise and avoid drinking too much alcohol. They should make an effort to leave the house daily and join organizations or clubs. Some people find companionship and more motivation to exercise by adopting a pet. People can also seek a counselor and should see a doctor for any physical issues.
Saving money during the divorce process can be important for people who are worried about finances, and negotiating the divorce agreement instead of going to court might help with this. Divorce mediation may help couples who are experiencing conflict over asset division reach an agreement they are both happy about. Couples should make sure they understand which assets may be subject to taxes or other penalties. For example, on some retirement accounts, there may be taxes at distribution, and this could lower the asset’s value.