While it is a well-known fact that 50 percent of all marriages end in separation, it is widely believed that if a marriage lasts more than ten years, the spouses involved are probably committed to a life together. However, as recent studies are suggesting, that is not the case in Illinois and across the nation. Divorce among those married ten years and more is on the rise, and experts are identifying the reasons why.

People approach marriage for a variety of reasons, and from a variety of backgrounds, and often, the behaviors and mechanisms they employ at the beginning of a relationship do not translate well over time. Not everyone is well-suited to change, but since change is a fundamental part of any marriage, this sets up potential for conflict when major changes — like children leaving for college, for example — occur within the marriage. It is not easy to “stick things out” when one or both spouses are inflexible in their roles.

Additionally, the passage of time can lead couples to grow apart — sometimes without them knowing it. After years of identifying as part of a parenting team, for example, the sudden return to “just being a couple” can be jarring and, at times, too much for the relationship to bear. Many couples find their relationships become greater struggles once children have left the proverbial nest.

Ultimately, divorce can be an unfortunate reality for couples of any age. Illinois residents facing a divorce are urged to seek out support during this difficult time. Understanding the process prior to entering it can help to ensure a relatively quick and equitable separation.

Source: Huffington Post, Marriage Problems That Lead To Divorce After Decades, Laura Seldon, Sept. 9, 2013