Some Maryland parents might assume that once their children move out of the house, they will have more time for one another and the interests that they enjoy pursuing together. Unfortunately, what sometimes happens is that they discover that they have changed over the years and that all they have in common is the children.
Divorce is on the rise for people over 50, and empty nests may be causing some of those situations. Often, the focus on raising children means that issues that need to be worked out get brushed away until later. However, there are things couples can do to keep their marriage strong long before their children leave home. While their children are still in high school, they can start talking about what they want to do once they move out. They can also make plans for their retirement.
Withdrawal is often a sign that a relationship is in trouble. This can happen when couples essentially start leading separate lives, pursuing individual interests. Couples can avoid this by making an effort to join one another in these pursuits. This may help them continue to see one another as individuals and not as just parents to their children.
Despite these efforts, parents may still find themselves facing marital problems. When people divorce because they have grown apart after a long marriage, they may be able to amicably negotiate a settlement agreement although litigation may be necessary in some cases. While they will not need to make arrangements for child support or custody in most cases, they may still want to reach an agreement if their children are still in college about helping them with the cost of their education. Some parents may also want to talk about how they will help their children with such things as a wedding or purchasing a home.