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Baby Boomers Continue to Skew Divorce StatsEvery time there is a change in statistics we always forecast doom and gloom, as if every slight tick out of the norm is just first sign of drastic change. The avalanche effect can be seen in businesses across the board when it comes to stocks and the unpredictability of the markets. But social stats, different causes, and facets that make up society are often under scrutiny for what they man, and what’s going to be the continuing trend in the future. This is also very true in the history of divorce timeline.

Many people thought the marriage sky was falling when the change in laws supposedly lead to an explosion of divorce in the 70’s. However, many factors can logically explain these spikes and scenarios, from women’s rights movements to subtly more open minded, paradigm shifts within society. But there is also an interesting factor that could be at the heart of trends and stats throughout the population in the US, and that is the generation called the “baby boomers”

How the Baby Boomers Affect Divorce and Social Stats

They bursted through and rebelled in the 60’s; then, among other already stated possible reasons; they were involved in the spike of divorces in the 70’s; and, as they get older and reach senior citizen age they are affecting the “grey” divorce phenomenon, as well as other notable social-centric issues. It seems logical that the largest generation has been spiking the numbers across the board as they moved through childhood, young adulthood, adulthood, and now seniorhood. Across the board, from the need of government programs and jobs, to social factors in society such as marriage and divorce, baby boomers have spiked or moved the needle in one way or another.

Explaining the Grey Divorce Boom

A recent study analyzed the spike in grey divorces to emphasize the baby boomers’ affect on senior citizen divorce. In 1990, the divorce rate for people 50 and older was about 4.9 divorces for every 1,000 married persons of that age. By 2010, the rate was 10 divorces for every 1,000 married persons 50 or older. During this same period of time, the overall divorce rate for the United States remained flat or slightly declined from about 19 divorces per 1,000 persons in 1990 to 18 in 2010. Note that the number of people over 50 years of age has increased during that time as well; 600,000 persons over age 50 got divorced in 2010 compared to about 200,000 in 1990. Many other factors are taken into account when it comes to the divorce process, such as race, marital history, education, and economics; but the constant has remained the same, until the baby boomers aged.

So what does this mean? Is it necessary to call a press conference about the end of the world every time we see a slight spike in certain statistics pertaining to the structure of relationships, marriage, family, and divorce? Or is it just the consequences of a particularly large generation within the base population? There are many factors that go into marriage and filing for divorce, not all of them are quantifiable and measurable.

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