What Are Gray Divorce Regrets?

Last Updated on January 18, 2024 by Lori Pace

For women, midlife often looks more liberating. Children are either grown up or almost grown. She may have a high-ranking position or she could be passing the torch to free up her time for other things. Her body is changing and maturing, in ways that our sexist, aged society disapproves of. But she doesn’t care about others’ opinions – which for many women is the greatest liberation.

Having lived through the confusion of a marriage where one partner felt stifled while the other yearned for personal growth, I can testify that it’s a challenging juncture. Many of us wonder if we could have foreseen the future differently and avoided the heartache of gray divorce. But are there strategies to navigate this delicate phase without regret?

Plan Your Future Destination To Avoid Gray Divorce Regrets

Combine dissatisfaction with a sense of urgency and you’ve got a recipe for throwing babies in the bathwater, and then deciding that it’s time to remodel or sell the upstairs bathroom and move to Tahiti.

In a midlife crisis during menopause, big impulsive decisions may be made. After all, you only have so much time to accomplish all your goals. If you feel that someone (or something) is holding you back from living the life you want, it’s time to let go and move on!

However, making rash decisions can lead to lasting regret and cause lasting damage, which we call the gray divorce regrets. It could make the difference between dancing to the music or facing it. You might find it helpful to consider all possible futures as potential travel destinations. What can you do to plan for the journey that will be the rest of your life?

Decide on Where You Want To Be

Choosing your future path during a gray divorce is akin to planning a lifelong journey. Are you seeking excitement and adventure, or do you yearn for relaxation and predictability? Remember, this isn’t a two-week vacation; it’s a transformation of your entire life. While risks and adventures may beckon, it’s essential to recognize that your choices need not permanently sever ties with your past. The path ahead should offer flexibility and room for growth, allowing you to revisit familiar comforts if needed.

Choose Someone Who Will Go Through The Journey With You

Ask yourself these questions: What are you looking for in a travel partner? You need someone to walk with you step by step and be as excited to embark on your next adventure as you are. You might also need someone to talk to about your menopause stories and provide a safe, familiar harbor. It is possible that the travel companion you are looking for is already there. If not, you might be better equipped to find the right one or decide to do it all alone.

Don’t Forget the Baggage

Plan Your Future Destination To Avoid Gray Divorce Regrets
Gray Divorce can bring more regrets than you think!

Let’s not overlook the emotional baggage that often accompanies gray divorce. I’ve experienced firsthand how the weight of unspoken emotions and unfulfilled dreams can strain a relationship. It’s crucial to evaluate whether your dissatisfaction stems from your partner or from within yourself. Sometimes, the baggage is our own, and in the pursuit of personal happiness, we must tread carefully not to unintentionally discard our closest confidants and support systems.

Know the weather at your destination 

If you have been together for a while, your lives can become complicated. You may lose friends, and in-laws, or be unable to communicate with your children. It is possible to lose access or be excluded from meaningful events and places. You may feel lonely and cold at first.

What Should You Do Now To Avoid Gray Divorce Regrets?

The whirlwind of emotions that accompany the desire for change can be overpowering. I’ve personally felt the pull to explore new horizons, to embrace a world of possibilities with the wind in my hair and the future ablaze.

However, I understand the weight of shared history and differing visions for the future. It’s not uncommon for partners to harbor dissimilar dreams; one may dream of sports teams and matching recliners, while the other envisions Japanese lessons and scuba diving adventures. Are these differences insurmountable? Through negotiation and compromise, it’s possible to harmonize these diverging paths. Engaging in an open and honest conversation, driven by kindness and respect, may not salvage a relationship that’s truly beyond repair, but it can preserve a bond that holds immense significance over time.

Lori Pace
Lori Pace

Lori Pace is a single mother of three daughters ages 7 and under. As a working mom from home, she balances kids, work and two crazy dogs with humor and love. Follow Lori as she honestly gives tips and advice based on her own experiences as a single mom!