A Case Study in Grey Divorce

Meet Anthony.  He is 57 and spent his professional life in the investment industry.  When the market faltered, he was terminated with a healthy severance.  With the blessing of his wife of 30 years, he wrote a “how-to” book for online investors.  His project netted him a part time position at a local college teaching business writing courses.

Four years later, his wife Marcia, an optometrist with her own small business, announced that she wanted to leave the marriage.  They had been in counseling on and off, but Anthony never thought the marriage would end.  How could this be happening just when the last of their 2 sons was graduating university and the older was building a law practice?

This is the new reality for many in their 50’s and 60’s.  Longevity as a result of fitness and good diet, as well as lifestyle choices, means that being married to one person goes on for a long time.  And for some, the thought of remaining in a less than perfect marriage after the kids are gone is not what they choose.

When Anthony and Marcia saw lawyers, they began to realize that they had a lifetime of obligation and responsibility towards one another that would not end with their separation.  They soon understood that they had to plan the process they would use to reach a final agreement, or risk overspending their savings.

This couple, like so many others, is likely to succeed in mediation.  Here are some of the reasons why:

  • The mediator along with a financial partner will make sure you understand what your financial future looks like and will offer you  the opportunity to make market adjustments as necessary
  • It is a place where you can calmly talk about what you each need and want with the guidance of the mediator
  • You can control cost and timelines
  • The mediation process respects your future as a family- separate but still a family
  • Mediation focuses on the future
  • Mediation has a proven track record of success


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