Getting divorced is no easy decision. Multiple factors come to a boiling point resulting in both partners deciding to end their marriage. During the proceedings, numerous elements have to be discussed and considered before anything can be finalized.

However, what do you have to consider if you end a long term marriage towards the later part of your life? This kind of divorce has been labeled a “gray” divorce and has become a more common occurrence. While any divorce has to follow protocol and procedure, a gray divorce has to be performed with additional care and consideration.

Here are some tips to help smooth the rocky path ahead.

Try Not To Criticize

Whatever the cause of the divorce is, engaging with your ex over the particulars of the divorce by criticizing is not a healthy way to carry out the process. Playing the blame game will hinder your growth and keep you in the past. Criticizing your ex will only serve to build anger and resentment and will only hurt you more. Whatever pain you feel, try to transfer it towards positive activities that will be therapeutic to you.

Sort Out Your Finances

With any divorce, the topic of finances looms heavy. You have to ask yourself, “Will I have to pay alimony?” or “How will this affect my investments?” With a gray divorce, you might say that this doubly true as older members of our society are generally more financially vulnerable as added complications such as fixed incomes can be an additional factor. Whatever the details are, make sure that you maintain your financial footings so that the rest of your years can be stable.

Your Children Are Still Your Children

No matter when a divorce happens, your children will always be your children. Don’t assume that because your children are fully grown that a divorce will not affect them. Take the time to explain to your children, even if they are fully grown and have children of their own, that the divorce is not their fault. Additionally, look to your children to help you through this emotional time. As they are older, they may have wisdom they can share with you to lessen the emotional fallout that a divorce brings.

Weigh Expectations vs Reality

With a gray divorce, you may want to rush the proceedings so that you can get on with your life. The divorce process for long-term marriages cannot simply be completed with a snap of a finger. Give the process time and consideration so that you and your ex can iron out all of the appropriate details. While you may expect the process to happen more rapidly, come to terms with the reality that your divorce will take time.

Reclaim Your Happiness

No matter what age you decide to divorce, the proceedings can drain your emotional stability. This may be especially taxing to someone in the later part of their lives as you may not have thought that this would happen. While you may want to focus on the loss, try your best to focus on moving forward and reclaiming the happiness you deserve. See your divorce as an opportunity to create a new life for yourself and redefine who you are and what you want to be. There is life after a divorce and it’s up to you to live it.