Five insights on life after divorce for a man over 50
So, you don’t think you want to be Mr. and Mrs. anymore? Has the “D” word now shifted from your thoughts to plans and actions? Divorce at 50 or over can seem unbearable but try to remember that you are not alone and it is challenging at any age.
Divorce rates for men over 50 have doubled since 1980 and have tripled for those over 65. This is now being referred to as “Gray Divorce.” More and more men who have been married for 10 — 30 years are getting divorced, making it more common.
1. Knowing Your Worth and Value
First, remember that you are a good man. Bad things happen to good people, both men and women. Try to see your ex-wife as a good woman, especially if children are involved. After all, she is your children’s mother, and you will always be their father.
The effects of divorce can vary depending on the ages of your children, your mindset, mental health, and support network. For young adult children, divorce tends to be more difficult because they have only known you as a married couple. If you have children at home still, they will most likely adapt and eventually see it as normal.
2. The Cost of Divorce
The divorce process can also be expensive. Before you hire a divorce attorney, explore your options. If you and your soon-to-be ex are amicable, work out the details yourselves. If you disagree on something, find a mediator to help bridge the gap.
There is also the option of collaborative divorce. This will involve a team of experts to guide you both through the process. You can save thousands of dollars by working together to create an agreeable separation. This will also decrease your stress and help you maintain positive relationships with everyone involved, especially your children.
Divorce over 50 can be lonely and difficult. If you or a loved one have questions about divorce planning or other financial matters, click here:
3. How to Rebuild Life After Divorce at 50
It’s been a long time since you lived alone. What will that be like? Being single in your 20’s is very different from being single in your 50’s. Even though men tend to be less emotional, adjusting to a new life can be difficult and, at times, painful.
Living a new lifestyle may be challenging. You may no longer come home to a house full of conversation and human interaction. Except for the TV or radio, it may be extremely quiet.
You may develop a feeling of loneliness or even depression. Remember to make your mental and physical health a priority.
Don’t go through this alone. As you go through this process, stay engaged with friends and family. A support group can also be helpful.
Begin to find new ways to interact with others. Think about ways to meet new people and engage other singles.
Dating sites have become very popular for men over 50 years of age. However, it is recommended that you wait at least one year before joining or visiting these sites. You need time to work on the “new” you and how you want to live your life.
Today, there are more single women over 50 than men. This means there will be plenty of opportunities to date and socialize with the opposite sex. Don’t rush it. Women can also sense when a man is on the rebound.
4. Creating a New Plan
Being single can be concerning as you approach your twilight years.
Modern medicine has allowed us to live a longer life. As you age, however, there is increased risk that you will need some type of extended care. You no longer have a spouse to care for you, and don’t expect your children to do so either.
Your children may have their own children and responsibilities that make it impossible for them to assist you. Among baby boomers, this is becoming one of the biggest financial dilemmas that families are encountering. This is an area that needs considerable planning on your part.
Discussions with family members and your financial planner will go a long way to ensure your care isn’t left up to the state.
This is most likely the time of your peak earning years. The financial effects of divorce will therefore be both short and long term.
Retirement planning may also be affected. Pensions and material assets may also be split up. The bottom line is you will be maintaining a household on a single income.
It’s time to rethink your lifestyle and adjust to a new budget. Be realistic — don’t kid yourself by thinking you’re going to buy a sports car and move into a bachelor pad. Even if you’ve saved for a long time, you may need to tighten your belt.
You may be surprised to learn that the IRS favors married couples. Therefore, as a single adult, you may end up in a higher tax bracket. This is a factor that needs to be addressed ahead of time.
As you approach Social Security claims, your SSI benefit may be reduced due to earnings and taxes. Any alimony you must pay is no longer deductible on your taxes. It is a good idea to include a financial planner on your team as you go through the divorce process. Hiring a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP) or Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA) will assist you in building wealth and creating your financial plan.
5. The Impact Marital Dissolution Has on Relationships
Life after divorce for a man over 50 will impact your relationships. Divorce may result in losing friends and strained relationships with family, leaving you feeling even more alone and even depressed. How you go through the divorce process will affect some relationships.
An amicable divorce will minimize the negative aspects. However, a contested, nasty divorce tends to alienate people. Regardless of how your married life was, work to make the divorce as amicable as possible.
“My way or the highway” will not win you any more friends. This is a time to take a step back and reflect on what is most important to you. Ask yourself what kind of relationship you want with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, children, family, and friends in your post-divorce life.
Conclusion: Life After Divorce For a Man Over 50
So, what does this all really mean? You need to approach your divorce with your eyes wide open. The decisions you make today will affect you for the rest of your life.
Life expectancy for a male at age 50 is 89. Therefore, it is important to determine how you want to live out the next 39 years of your life. What kind of relationship with family and friends do you want to maintain? What type of partner do you want to attract?
Take time to look at the big picture and determine how you want to live your life. Remember, you are a good man and want to live a life you will be proud of.
If you or someone you know needs additional support, download our free Divorce Survival Guide: