Baby Boomers & Divorce In The USA



Baby boomers were born post-World War 2 – 1946-1964.

I’m right at the tail end of that period, having been born in 1961, a time when

  • President Kennedy established the Peace Corps
  • Soviets built a wall dividing East and West Berlin
  • Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin becomes first human in space during a single-orbit flight
  • The New York Yankees won the World Series over Cincinnati, 4-1

The population is getting older – and living much longer.

The concept of marriage to the same person for 40+ years is daunting for many, and they choose to divorce.

The divorce rate among older adults has more than doubled since 1980, and 1 in 4 persons who divorces today is over age 50.

For every 1,000 married persons ages 50 and older in 2008, nearly 10 experienced divorce.

Older adults who divorce tend to be in shorter marriages than either those who remain married or become widowed, as they now feel empowered to seek divorce rather than remain in an unhappy marriage.

However, happiness is not the only factor lacking in baby boomer-marriages.

Often cited as the reason for seeking divorce by baby boomers was ’empty nest’ syndrome – children leaving home in pursuit of an education or beginning their own marriages.

Couples felt the ‘need’ to stay married was no longer present, and parted ways.

For some, the ’empty nest’ status afforded them the time they had craved for years to be able to find their sense of self, and to rediscover who they are at their core.

Of those divorcees who went on to remarry, 1 in 4 seeks a divorce as they are no longer willing to remain in a marriage which does not fulfil their needs.

Further growth in the divorce rate for older adults is anticipated as the proportion of the older adult population in a remarriage rises.

Watch this space for updates.

About Robin Wright- Thurley:

Robin is an Associate Coach at Phoenix Relationship Coaching where he guides men towards achieving their dreams of lasting love. He is a baby boomer in a happy relationship.