Why Get a Divorce?
Posted June 9, 2010on:
Lila: Looks like another one bites the dust. Al and Tipper Gore are going to separate after 40 years. After 40 years, why would you go through the formality of divorcing? They claimed to have grown apart, so go ahead and just live separate lives. What are they going to do now? Start dating again? Can you imagine starting all over again in your 60’s? I would just suck it up and live the rest of my life quietly. I understand they are in the public eye so anything they do will be scrutinized, therefore they have no choice to make it official. But Warren Buffett is in the public eye and he never divorced his wife. He just left her alone and spent time with his real lady-love.
I remember when I was working at the bank, a lady came in for advice because she was in her late 50’s and was having to start all over again. Her husband decided, on the eve of his retirement, that he did not want to retire with her. He was going to divorce her and remarry his long-time mistress, who was his secretary. Can you imagine that? OMG!!!! She had devoted her whole life to him and their family and then he decided to end everything when they were on the last leg of their trip of life. I was shocked. Why didn’t he just continue with the charade? She knew what was going on. She said she would have preferred that over the humiliation that she had to face every day. So sad.
Beatrice: I don’t know that I agree only because I watch my parents who are both in their early 60’s and are actually very active, traveling all over the world, taking classes, watching their grandkids and spending a lot of quality time with other 60 year olds. They are all having the time of their lives being retired. I wouldn’t want to damper it with a failed relationships, especially one where you have to live with the person you are no longer in love with. That would be horrible. I would rather be by myself than pretending in a marriage.
Unfortunately, I think divorce is on the rise for those going into retirement because the couple does not want the same things in their life. There are also a lot of couples who only stay married for the sake of their children and once the children are gone they have to deal with each other and well that just won’t work.
L: Yes, but your parents are happy and enjoy each other’s company. I am not saying they have to live together. I think it would be better to be upfront with the family and say that there will be a different arrangement. They can live apart and get together during major family events. Why go through the hassle of getting a divorce, splitting your assets, etc. There are major consequences for that action. Just move out and live separate lives. That way, the couple are not staying together for the sake of children.
My friend, Mike, has parents that are very unusual. His parents are separated and have been for decades. They live apart, they have separate lives, date other people, and only come together at major functions. His father is one of the best divorce attorneys in town. Can you believe that? Anyway, he knows the consequences of a divorce and believes it is better to just stay together.
I think my feelings are embedded in the thought that you don’t need to get married unless you are planning to have children and raise a family. At the same time, you don’t have to get married just because you are expecting unless it is something that was planned all along. Two mistakes don’t make a right. On the flip side, you don’t need to get a divorce after being together for sooooo long if you are not planning to remarry and start, again. Of course there is one caveat, the relationship you are currently in is not dysfunctional or abusive in any way.
B: It seems that you have thought a lot into this topic. I have not. I can see your side of the issue and the side that people want to be completely removed from their past and the way to do this is to completely separate, i.e. divorce. Mike’s father is smart because he has a lot to lose in order of divorce, however the wife has a lot to gain. Many people who are 50 and older don’t consider it too late to start again, and they may want to remarry and in order to do this you can’t stay married.
L: I have thought a lot about it because I have spent a lot of time alone and able to just watch relationships flourish or in some cases, diminish.
I have read that most divorces are initiated by women. Maybe you are on to something. Most women have more to gain from divorces and that’s why they want the complete, clean break. As women become more and more of the main bread-winner, we’ll see less divorces.
B: I don’t think we will see less and less divorces, they appear to be on the rise. It may go down in percentage because fewer people will opt out of marriage. However I think people don’t see marriage the way it was 50 years ago. It is a sacred thing to me, however more and more view it as a nice thing to have. But if it doesn’t work out, then so be it; at least they gave it a shot. It is too easy to divorce and even know you are talking about the money side of things, that is not often an issue with most people. Most very well-to-do people have prenups, and then there is the not-so-well-to-do people who have nothing to begin with. The ones in between just split everything 50 / 50, and they know that going into the divorce so it is appealing to them.
L: I truly believe in the sanctity of marriage. I don’t think you can embark on it willy-nilly. It is a serious commitment, but it is not also a necessity to have in order to have a fulfilling life. Who knows what is going on these people’s head? I know several people who have wedded a few times and wonder to myself why do they keep trying? If it wasn’t working for them after the second marriage, why try it again? It makes no sense to me. I would just give up and say marriage is not for me. Maybe they should make it harder for people to get married.
B: I think that is the answer we need to make it harder to marry, not just pick on the gay community, but all of us.
L: Here here sista. We should make it harder for everyone. Make it such a pain in the a$$ that people don’t even want to bother unless they truly belive in it. Then the devoted will be the only ones that will get married.
B: I second that! It would just get in the way of the Constitution and then it would become a fight if it were to be done that way. Oh well, at least some of us believe in it for all the reasons it was put into existence in the first place.
L: According to this article, couples divorce after decades of being married because they are living longer so they don’t want to spend their golden years with someone they cannot stand and divorce is more acceptable. I guess that makes sense, but I am a practical girl. I would just move out.
Read the article here: Why call it quits after decades of marriage?
B: My parents are one of a lucky few, although my mom will say that my dad is often weird as he is aging. LOL.