Tuesday, May 11, 2010

REMARRYING IN LATER YEARS

If you are an older adult, divorced or widowed, would you consider remarriage? Not an easy question to answer for a number of reasons:
  • As an older adult, you are already quite set in your ways. It would take a lot of effort to give and take to make the marriage work.
  • At 60+, health can be a big issue. What if your new spouse is later diagnosed with a health problem that requires 24/7 care from you? Are you prepared to be his/her caregiver for the rest of your sunset years?
  • If you are widowed, would your in-laws think less of you for remarrying?
  • Your new partner's children may not accept you. They may resent the thought of having a stepmother or stepfather.
  • There's also the issue of inheritance. Would a new spouse mean a new will? This might sour your relationship with your partner's adult children.
These are just a few of the issues and complications that might arise when older adults remarry. Perhaps one solution is to seek companionship or co-habitation rather than remarriage. Unfortunately, in Asian societies, co-habitation is frowned upon regardless of the age. Elderly couples living together outside the sanctity of marriage would be viewed as setting a bad example for young people. In Malaysia, if they are Muslim, they would be arrested under Syariah law!

No wonder remarriage among the elderly remains uncommon. However, the situation might change in the near future with more "matrimonial meetings" or marriage fairs like the one held recently in Ahmedabad, India. Over 300 single, divorced and widowed senior citizens in their 60s and 70s gathered to make friends and enjoy lunch together, and at the same time check out who's available as potential life-partners.

Surveys have shown that a happy marriage or relationship helps us live longer and healthier. That's good enough reason for the lonely ones among us to start dating again.

2 comments:

foodbin said...

this is a real tough decision to make-for me remarrying is a big no no.

ty said...

Remarrying introduces more problems to complicate your life in the sunset years. Companionship or cohabitation is preferred, hang the public opinion. You can't please everyone, just please yourself.