Lots of things change during your forties and marriage can certainly be one of those. We explore six different ways your marriage is likely to change as you move through your fourth decade.
- Thoughts may turn to divorce
Unfortunately, the forties can be a time when couples look more towards divorce, and with the introduction of no-fault divorce earlier in 2022, this could become the case more and more. According to the ONS, the number of divorces in 2014 was the highest in the 45-49 bracket for men and 40-44 bracket for women. The new laws now make it easier for couples to divorce as there is now no requirement to cite blame in the proceedings. Designed to remove the conflict from a divorce, the new laws can also make it more appealing for couples in their forties who have wanted a divorce for some time.
- Your common ground fades
Although sad, it is often the case that the things you used to have in common with your spouse are no more. This can be because of other focusses that have entered yours and your partner’s lives, whether this is looking after elderly parents or children that are still at home. Your partner can become less of a priority and this can cause a rift and may even result in you falling out of love. But this doesn’t have to be the case, and you can find new ways to reconnect with your spouse.
- You begin to bond on a new level
Although some couples find they drift apart, others find that time and past shared experiences bring them closer. As time goes by, there’s more of an inclination to revisit what you have done so far in your lives. When you are able to look back on the children you have brought up and the life you have created together, this can kindle a huge sense of satisfaction with your spouse and a greater level of appreciation and connection. It can ignite future plans and help you grow and learn new things together.
- Sex won’t be as much of a priority
There are always exceptions to every rule but generally speaking, couples who have been married a long time and have now hit their forties find that their sex life changes. This can feel like a change in sexual intimacy in general and it may be down to a number of factors. One being the hormone levels if you are a woman and a lower of the libido if you are a man.
- Growing children help you find your former life
As children grow up, they inevitably need their parents less and less in a physical sense. Children are able to be more independent, leaving space for partners to find and build on their former relationship again. This is chance for more time together and an opportunity to embrace new experiences as a couple again.
- You trust each more financially
Having had a few decades of building savings, buying a property, going on holidays, couples in their forties have usually found their comfort level with each other. This means there is less of a need to check in on what is spent and earned, and a deeper sense of financial trust can be formed, only cementing a marriage further.
There are pros and cons to how your marriage changes when you reach 40. This can depend on the life experiences you have had or the difficulties you may face in the future, some of which may be out of your control. But there are many unsung benefits too, including a deeper sense of trust, love and connection.