Marital research in the past suggested that the longer you stayed married, especially after twenty years, the more likely you were to stay married for life. This research is changing. In the past five years the rate of divorce among baby boomers is rising, which usually means more couples finding themselves in the position of co-habitation or re-marriage. There are pros and cons to re-marriage, and most of the time what you don’t know is what will hurt you.
Pros to re-marriage in mid-life
- More emotional security minimizes depression and anxiety.
- Being married is also correlated with a healthier lifestyle; marriage is an investment in the other person. When you invest emotionally you are more likely to want to care for your partner and make sure they are healthy.
- There is a sense of feeling more accepted among neighbors, couple friends and family.
- Your second marriage may be an opportunity to mentor being a great parent for a child.
- It may reinforce your spiritual beliefs.
Disadvantages to re-marriage in midlife
- The number one reason for second marriages not working is the children’s reaction. If the children are adults they may worry about financial issues and what their parent’s new partner’s main motivation is.
- You may find yourself repeating the same behaviors that contributed to your first marriage not working out.
- You may find in a second marriage that your old friends are not as accepting of your new spouse and may purposely leave you off the guest list.
- Marriage means sharing and negotiating. This often times becomes more difficult with age.
- If you have been married for a long time and the marriage ended in divorce or death, getting remarried in mid-life can prevent you from having time to engage in interests that you never had time to explore.
Questions to consider prior to re-marriage or moving in with your partner in mid-life.
- Will marrying this person help to make you a better version of yourself?
- Will marrying this person have a positive or negative influence on your children?
- What will living with this person instead of marrying them mean to you (does it violate spiritual feelings, guilt or regret)?
- Is fear a factor in your decision either way?
- Never do anything you don’t feel good about in your heart, gut and soul. There is an old saying which is 99% true; if it quacks like a duck, it probably is a duck.