Divorce Often Leads To Depression in Retirement

Divorce Often Leads To Depression in Retirement 

We know that divorce often leads to depression in retirement.

One of the more difficult, but crucial steps for you to be happy in retirement is to protect your marriage.  

A divorce after retirement often leads toDivorce often leads to depression in retirement depression for your retirement, not the happy retirement time of your dreams.   

Avoiding divorce and the resulting depression that can accompany this event in your life can help you have a better quality of life during your retirement   

Paying attention to your marriage, and ensuring a strong relationship is important at any stage of your life.  Retirement is no exception.  

You are retiring from work, not life.

You are among the fortunate if you are entering retirement with a helpful spouse at your side.  To have that spouse supportive and loving in retirement can create a better adjustment for the retiring individual.  Having a plan is also a step towards a strong retirement.

All kidding aside, retirement is a time of adjustment.  Not something you prefer doing alone.

Having a plan is also a step towards a strong retirement.  Yes, a financial one as well as a plan for what you want to do with your time after retirement. (A few suggestions for retirement)

I know, YOU won’t have trouble adjusting to retirement.  These are the golden years that you have looked forward to and waited for and — I know.  

But let me tell you

If you have been married throughout your working years the shock of retirement and a divorce will knock you to your knees.  

With so many statics now revealing how important your relationships are in surviving the transition from your work years to retirement time, please do not neglect yours.  You should be aware and do the best you can to preserve what relationships you have.


One of the big handicaps you face as a retiring spouse?  It is a fact that you do not communicate with your spouse anymore. You may talk, but are you really communicating?  

The most common thread for retirement runs like it did for a couple we know. She was a stay at home Mom.  There was a late arriving child, so she was busy with getting this later child reared after the older ones are grown and on their own.  

Let’s, call them Jim and Jill.  Jim made a good living.  Jill, by being resourceful, was able to be a stay at home Mom.  She has only had the younger one in college 2 years when Jim retires.  

He was of course in charge of his department, managing people, and resources.  He also was raised as most of us have been, with the mindset that since I earn the money, I have a very active say in how it is spent.  

The busy of life and time passing by finds them with a budget that works for them.

With this passing of time, Jim and Jill find themselves with an informal agreement about this budget. Through this time, Jill has learned that as long as she keeps within those boundaries, Jim pays no attention.  

They both proceed through the years, and it is retirement time. Jim’s job had expanded his responsibilities, and his management skills were refined and improved as well.   He feels more than ready to put budget worries behind him.  Just allowing Jill manage the household budget these last 20 years.  One less worry for him.

He is tired after dealing with the demands of his employment. Jill handles most financial questions without “bothering” Jim about the day to day stuff. Trying to keep the normal juggling and shuffling involved in keeping the household going, and balancing the budget, quietly handled.   Her skills have grown as well.  

She’s not hiding anything from Jim when she doesn’t mention the issues she has had that day or that week.  She knows he needs some downtime.  

During this downtime, he had rather not deal with financial issues of the household. Jim thinks that because Jill hasn’t said anything, then everything has been going great.  Jim thinks there are no problems making ends meet. That the budget she operates with is more than enough to keep things going after retirement. 

Jim retires knowing they are going to have to pare down a bit on the overall budget amount.  

His thinking is that the house will be paid off soon, then we will have that money to ease out into the budget, enabling them to have a bit of extra along to do a few things for fun.  

So until then, they will just “tighten the belt a bit.”  He did not see fit to mention this “belt-tightening time” to Jill.

Does he share this bit of information with Jill?  

Of course not.  

He does not want to admit that he misplanned and now they won’t be able to have as much money coming in.  He thinks he can get the “project in under budget.”  

After all, this is what he has been doing for years at work.  He is actually very good at it.

Sound familiar?  

Well, now he is retired and can go grocery shopping with Jill  

He can “help” her cut some costs at the grocery store.  For Jill, grocery shopping is the one place she has come into her own. She’s proud of how well she’s taken care of the family’s finances with her thrifty management at the grocery store.

She knows which of the store brand and which of the name brands work best for their needs.  

Jims continual insisting that the lesser priced store brand is what they need is getting under Jills’ skin.  She has been doing this for years.  How dare he? Does Jim share his concerns about adjusting the budget to meet the new income?  Of course not.   

Her resentment grows because he’s kept a record of how much he’d saved by buying all the store brands over what she had in the grocery cart.  

How dare he think I can’t do my job.  

This situation results in Jim and Jill sitting in a huff all evening, not speaking. 

Jim frustrated because Jill doesn’t understand the situation they are in right now.  Jill equally frustrated because Jim tries to manage her like he would an employee at work.  

She’s not an employee, but a part of the team that has kept their budget afloat for years. Her part of managing the budget is as important as Jims’ part of making the money.  

This may seem superficial and unimportant, but remember, this couple has just started retirement  

They have the whacky adjustment of retirement to live through.  This is when divorce leads to depression in retirement.  

The balance of their life has been shifted.  

Jim no longer has work to lose himself in.  The escape to let the air settle from Jill’s unexpected and unexplainable reaction to his help at the grocery store.  

Jill, still feeling her abilities have been found lacking, has to grow accustomed to having Jim at home all day.  She needs some time to remember why she has done this all these years.

The days seem long 

Jim is wondering if this is all there is?  Staying in the house all day with a wife who is obviously not very happy to have him home all day.  This soon becomes a way of life. Neither are enjoying retirement. Divorce often leads to depression in retirement They are snippy and cranky with each other.  

The lack of communication between these 2 isn’t making this easy  

Jill had no idea retirement meant having Jim home all day.  Actually, she had not even considered what their life would be like after retirement.  

Jim had supposed he could play a little golf, then spend time with Jill, and they would be happy.   

The months move on by, and the situation gets no better.  

One day Jim is invited to join an old friend in a game of golf, and in the course of the game, the friend reveals that he is recently divorced!  

This is a surprise to Jim, as the friend lives out of town,  is in visiting relatives.   The two have not visited lately. The friend is recently retired as well.  Jim very hesitantly asks about the “divorced life.”  

At this point, the friend reveals the complete devastation that resulted from his divorce.  

Divorce often leads to depression in retirement and did for his friend.

How he could no longer afford the house they had lived in.  

The retirement savings was split.  

There was not enough time to recover financially due to his age.  

His health had suffered, and his Dr. suggested working with a counselor to figure out how to get through this time.   

The friend was fighting depression.  Not so much from the divorce.  It was finding his life turned upside down so quickly after retirement.

The resulting downsizing of his lifestyle and expectations.  That had been especially hard to adjust to.  

He has had self-esteem issues with all the changes in his life.  He shared with Jim that although this was the solution that he had chosen.  Had he known all that would result?  Well, he might have done things differently.  

Of course, we all know that problems do not usually start with retirement. Usually, the marriage needed attention before.  All too often, the routine of everyday life allows us to delay facing reality.  

Problems were there for Jim and Jill as well.  They had learned how to just live with them  

Retirement makes this more difficult or impossible.  

The one thing that Jim and Jill have not tried is communication. The couple hasn’t communicated in years. They think that because they were high school sweethearts, they know everything about each other.

Jim and Jill have learned to talk without communicating.   The golf game with Jim’s friend was an eye opener for him.  He decided to talk to a member of their church congregation about a time in the other man’s life when his marriage was a bit rocky.

Jim and Jill were members of a church with a strong program for protecting marriages.  

As a couple, they were able to visit with people who knew how to help them learn to actually talk to each other.  

Jim and Jill were offered some very strong help from experienced counselors. The couple found some good books to help them become aware of how and why they were at this point in their lives.  

They also realized that the issues they were having to be common in retirement adjustment.  Divorce and depression in retirement are capable of making your retirement years anything but golden. 

The results

Jim and Jill both made the decision to put some effort into preserving their marriage.  To them, it was worth the effort.  

Neither one wanted to spend their lives alone.  They both admitted their part in the creation of their problem.  Finally sitting down and communicating, not just talking is the first step to improvement.

Making themselves aware of the fact that an issue exists.  Add that to the willingness to work on it together. These things helped them see past some bad communication habits. Brought them closer together.  

Now they are both working to make retirement the best time in their lives.  They are both taking responsibility and acting like adults.  Not the teenagers they were when the met and fell in love.

Will they be successful?  Who knows.  If they aren’t, at least, they will have given it an effort.  They’ve improved their communications skills for all the other issues in their lives. 

What about you?  Do you really hear what your spouse says?  Are you able to hear what concerns your spouse has?  Do you really listen?  Speak up with issues of your own?  

What bad habits have you acquired from your lifetime?  How are these habits affecting your retirement living years?  Could some better habits make your life more fun?  

Retirement is not an easy time in your life in many respects.  A marriage that is suffering from neglect can shake the very ground you have built your retirement on. This is just not necessary for all.  Could your relationships benefit from some two way communication?

Depression can be only a heartbeat away even with your relationships going well. 

How can your strengthen your relationship with your spouse?  Even if you think your marriage is strong and in a good place? It never hurts to make yourself aware of the help and guidance from a proven source.  

Read a good book.  

One about how to communicate with your spouse. Think about how you can use the suggestions to improve your marriage.  And make it stronger.  Your retirement will benefit.

Divorce often leads to depression in retirement.  This can sometimes be avoided with awareness.   Learning some prevention measures.  Mend some fences.  Improve your communication skills.  And enjoy a better retirement.Divorce often leads to depression in retirement









  from Wikipedia

“Nonverbal communication describes the process of conveying meaning in the form of non-word messages. Examples of nonverbal communication include gestures, body language, facial expression, eye contact, and how one dresses. Nonverbal communication also relates to

Nonverbal communication also relates to the intent of a message.

Examples of intent are voluntary, intentional movements like shaking a hand or winking, as well as involuntary, such as sweating.  The speech also contains nonverbal rhythm, intonation, tempo, and stress. There may even be a pheromone component.

Research has shown that up to 55% of human communication may occur through non-verbal facial expressions.[4] It affects communication most at the subconscious level and establishes trust.

Likewise, written texts include nonverbal elements such as handwriting style, an arrangement of words and the use of emoticons to convey emotion

An Effective Communication Process*:

• Use standard terminology when communicating information. • Request and provide clarification when needed. • Ensure statements are direct and unambiguous. • Inform the appropriate individuals when the mission or plans change. • Communicate all information needed by those individuals or teams external to the team. • Use nonverbal communication appropriately. • Use proper order when communicating information.[6] ″* for formal English-speaking groups–