The shifting gender norms witnessed across our country in the preceding decades have manifested themselves in several forms. These shifting norms have changed the makeup of work environments, the makeup of homes and also the makeup of divorce trends. No longer is it only men being ordered to pay women alimony, or women being awarded full custody of children in cases of divorce in Texas. Divorce decrees are being issued to couples with splits and settlements that are far more varied than they were even just a few decades ago.
Often, we post on this blog on topics relating to effectively interacting with an ex-spouse after a divorce, what to expect during the divorce process and issues of a similar nature. But what about when a divorce is finalized? With the rate of marriages that end in divorce in Texas and across the rest of the nation consistently reaching as high as 50 percent, the odds are that if an individual is looking to date post-divorce, he or she will likely date someone else that has also been divorced.
Earlier this week, we blogged on helping an adult child cope with the end of the long-term marriage of their parents in Texas. This unique need is arising out of the increase of what is known as "gray divorce."According to a study conducted by sociologists at Bowling Green State University, while divorce rates have been slowly declining since their height around 30 years ago, the rate of gray divorce, couples with partners ages 50 years or older parting ways, has more than doubled over the last 20 years.
When an American citizen seeks to marry a foreign citizen, an individual living abroad or a dual citizen, the engaged couple usually has to jump through hoops to obtain a marriage certificate and to live together within the same national borders. For better and for worse, when couples with complicated citizenship issues seek to divorce, red tape similarly abounds.
A very common reason that parents in Texas will continue to try to make a difficult marriage last is for the benefit of the children. When the problems persist but the children are out of the house, some couples make the decision to part ways. Within the last two decades, the rate of couples over the age of 50 divorcing has almost doubled.
Typical weddings in Texas are closely followed by a reception where friends and family celebrate the newlywed couple by toasting to a long and happy life before the couple whisks away for their honeymoon. Then divorce hits. In the midst of splitting up property, reaching a child custody agreement and working out alimony, there can be a lot of bitter feelings. While everyone strives for an amicable split, it is not uncommon for either one party or both to experience a gamut of emotions: sad, angry and overwhelmed.
There is little doubt these days that the American family is changing. Houston residents can look at their friends and neighbors for proof of this. If further evidence is needed, there is a recent study that from the University of Virginia. Researchers there found that divorce rates for married couples who have children have returned to the level at which they existed before the "divorce revolution" of the 1970s - but mostly because many couples are choosing not to marry in the first place.