Also, more women are more economically independent now, giving women an alternative pathway out of an unsatisfying marriage that women of previous generations may not have had, Brown says.
Finally, older divorce may be more common than any other time in history for a simple reason: People are living longer, says Brown. If you survive to age 65, you may live another 20 years, which is a long time to spend with someone you’re no longer happy with, she says. “You might want to call it quits.”
In a statement Bill and Melinda Gates released via Twitter, they said: “We continue to share a belief in that mission and will continue our work together at the foundation, but we no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our lives.”
Brown notes: “That language aligns with this notion that there’s still a lot of life left to live and wanting to do it in a way that is personally and individually rewarding and satisfying.”
Staying connected and growing together with your spouse or long-term partner can help you better cope with whatever life throws your way at any age. Here are six tips for doing just that:
1. Remember What Made You Fall in Love With Your Partner
When you’re with someone for many years, you can begin to stop seeing their positive qualities, and instead focus on all the things they do that are annoying or disappointing, says ily therapist and author of several books on healthy relationships, including What About Me? Stop Selfishness From Ruining Your Relationship.
“I encourage couples to think back to what they first fell in love with in each other and what they found so appealing and attractive about the other person,” she says.
2. Get Curious About Your Partner
When you first fall in love with a person, you’re very curious about what they are thinking and feeling, but couples who have been married for a long time can lose that, says Harville Hendrix, PhD, a couples therapist and coauthor of Getting the Love You Want (which he wrote with his wife, who is also a couples therapist). “Curiosity is when I show interest in you as a person without it necessarily being driven by anything I need. It’s really important in a relationship – and it’s sexy,” he says.
“Being curious is good for relationships because it helps you to listen and be more open,” he says. When your partner is talking to you, instead of wondering when they’ll be finished so you can interject a story or comment of your own, try asking: “Can you tell me more about that?” suggests Dr. Hendrix. It makes your partner feel valued and safe when you give them your full attention, and it promotes bonding between the two of you, he adds.
3. Honor Boundaries
Good boundaries are more important than ever given that work, school, and many other aspects of home life can all take place under one roof, says Hendrix. “If your partner is in the middle of something and you walk up to them and start talking – even if it’s to give them a compliment – the other person can view this an interruption to what they were thinking or feeling,” he says.
If you want to decrease conflict and increase the chances that your partner will be open to what you have to say, check in with them first, he says. “Start interactions by asking your partner, ‘Is now a good time?’ and www.besthookupwebsites.org/tinychat-review give them a chance to respond,’” says Hendrix. And if they say no, respect that answer.