Preserving marriage ‘infinitely preferable’ to divorce

Divorcees who ended their marriage in later life have spoken to the media of their regret, after ONS figures showed a rise in so-called ‘silver splitters’ in recent years.

Speaking to The Daily Telegraph several years after divorcing from her husband, Jane Gordon warned that there are “long-term effects of breaking up a family”.

The BBC website details the story of Peter who divorced and married again aged 72. He described the “hurt” of fractured family relations and stressed that others should avoid doing what he did.


Jane Gordon told The Daily Telegraph how she was happily married for over 20 years and raised three children.

She said her marriage eventually lost out to the “propaganda” of divorce, which was marketed as the “new norm” and a “fresh start”, compared to “outmoded” marriage.

By her own admission, Gordon subscribed to the belief that living with unhappily married parents was more damaging to children than a divorce.

However, she has realised that remaining in a marriage is “infinitely preferable” to ending it.

Long-term effects

“Twelve years on from my decree nisi, I believe that staying in a less than perfect marriage is infinitely preferable – for both parents and children – than the long-term effects of breaking up a family.”

Had I been able to look ahead and see the effects of my divorce I know I would have worked harder to save my marriage.

Jane Gordon

The mother said she had “no idea of the impact” divorce would have on the whole family, especially the loss of the family home and the “on-going disadvantages” of denying her children “the support of united parents as they go on to marry and have children themselves”.

She added: “Had I been able to look ahead and see the effects of my divorce I know I would have worked harder to save my marriage.”

Make it work

Speaking to the BBC, Peter said that his divorce after a lifetime of marriage came at a cost.

“If somebody came to me now, before they’d left their wife, asking what they should do I think my answer would be see if you can make it work, in other words don’t do what I did.”