|A Brief Report on Living Arrangements Following Gray Divorce.
|Year of Publication
|Brown, SL, Lin, I-F, Mellencamp, KA
|J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci
|2023 Feb 26
|Divorce, Living arrangements
OBJECTIVES: We offer new insights on how older adults in the U.S. navigate the aftermath of gray divorce (i.e., divorce that occurs among adults aged 50+) by describing their living arrangements upon divorce and tracking the stability of these configurations over time. Living arrangements are important to decipher because they are linked to health, well-being, and longevity.
METHODS: Using data from the 1998-2014 Health and Retirement Study, we uncovered patterns of U.S. older adult living arrangements upon divorce (N = 1,057), distinguishing among those who lived alone, lived with others, and lived with a new partner. Multinomial logistic regression models were estimated to assess how individual characteristics (demographics, marital biography, economic resources, health, and social ties) were associated with these configurations. Cumulative survival probabilities gauged the relative stability of these three living arrangements.
RESULTS: About half of U.S. adults lived alone upon gray divorce, another one-third lived with others, and the remaining 14% lived with a new partner. Adults living with a new partner tended to exhibit the most advantaged sociodemographic profiles whereas those living solo or with others were largely comparable. More than 70% of adults experienced a subsequent living arrangement transition if they lived with others upon divorce, versus just 50% of those living alone and only 30% of those with a new partner.
DISCUSSION: After divorce, older adults reside in a range of living arrangements, some of which are more stable than others. Future work should address whether and how these arrangements and their durability are related to post-divorce adjustment.