Divorce in Ohio and elsewhere continues to challenge adults, as it has for centuries. Different movements in society, such as the relaxation of sexual mores in the 1960s, shape the overall pattern of divorces, from how common they are to how they are perceived in society. Have recent years resulted in noticeable trends that show the courts and society changing how divorce is handled?

A recent article in the Pew Research Center shines some interesting light on love, marriage and divorce in America, The percentage of individuals over 18-years-old who are married remains steady at about 50%, though this figure is lower than it was 30 years ago. When it comes to cohabitation, the numbers are growing, with about 18 million Americans living with an unmarried partner. When it comes to divorce rates, one area that has seen an increase is in older Americans. The rate for those 65 years and older has nearly tripled since 1990, while those 50 and older has doubled in the last 30 years.

The impact of a divorce later in life, often called a gray divorce, can have major financial consequences on those affected, particularly on women. An article in Crain’s Cleveland Business shows that nearly 27% of women who divorced after age 63 were likely to be poor.  The number for older men who divorced late in life is also relatively high, with just over 11% considered poor. One study also illustrates the emotional toll a later divorce can have: the rate of depression in divorced older people is higher than that of those whose spouses have passed away.