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Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Crafting the Marriage Journey in Later Life: A Manual for Older Adults

Guest Blog by Nicole Rubin

Tying the knot later in life has its unique challenges and blessings. This guide offers a well-rounded approach to maneuvering the various aspects of senior marriage, from fostering emotional intimacy to making well-informed choices in finance and healthcare. In this article, we focus on building a gratifying and secure life together, embracing this new phase with both wisdom and joy.

Foster Emotional Resilience

Emotional resilience forms the cornerstone of any lasting relationship, more so when the couple is in their golden years. Compassion and acceptance are virtues that become even more meaningful with age. For example, managing expectations. Acknowledge that both of you bring a wealth of experiences, and sometimes, emotional baggage into the relationship. Maturity can be your ally here, helping you navigate conflicts and differences with grace.

Prioritize Shared Experiences

It becomes increasingly important to invest in activities that you both enjoy. Perhaps it's as simple as reading a book together or as engaging as traveling to a place neither of you has been before. Whatever the activity, it serves as a way to deepen your relationship. For instance, joining a community club through sites like Meetup can not only be fulfilling but also opens doors to socialize as a couple. Another example could be learning a new skill together, like cooking or dancing, which not only enriches your lives but also strengthens your emotional connection.

Evaluate Housing Options

When it comes to choosing where to live, researching home prices or rentals in your target area is a step that you can’t afford to skip. For example, if you’re interested in finding a rental to live closer to family, research housing prices in their vicinity. If you’re both avid travelers, you might want to consider downsizing to a smaller home, which could free up funds for your adventures.

Navigate Financial Conversations

Understanding the financial landscape is crucial when entering a late-life marriage. Money discussions should not be taboo. For many, this may involve blending assets or discussing retirement plans. Take time to consult with a financial advisor to ensure both of you are on the same page. For example, if one partner has more assets than the other, it’s important to discuss how to handle these in a manner that is fair and agreeable to both.

Organize Digital Records

Next, there's the often-overlooked aspect of managing your digital life. Thanks to mobile scanning apps, you can scan a document quickly, thereby making record-keeping easier than ever. An example of this is storing your medical records digitally, so they're always easily accessible.

Optimize Health Coverage

Your health is an invaluable asset. Therefore, reviewing your existing health coverage options should be on your priority list. Whether you're switching to a joint health insurance policy or maintaining individual ones, ensure that you're adequately covered. For example, if one partner has specific medical needs, make sure those are accounted for in whichever policy you choose.

Engage in Legal Planning

Legal matters, particularly concerning your estate and healthcare decisions, should not be overlooked. It’s advisable to consult with an attorney to make sure all your bases are covered. For instance, drafting a living will can help ensure your healthcare wishes are respected. Similarly, making your spouse the executor of your estate can help prevent potential legal tussles among family members.

Start a Business Together

Embarking on a business venture as a senior couple can be an exciting and rewarding endeavor, turning years of experience into a profitable enterprise. It's a chance to work together, leverage your accumulated wisdom, and create a legacy that embodies your shared values and passions. Forming an LLC offers several benefits including limited personal liability, less administrative paperwork, and tax advantages. You can form a limited liability company through ZenBusiness or hire an attorney.

Establish Life Milestones

Setting shared life goals can give you both something to strive for in this new chapter. Whether it’s a goal to travel to new places or to spend more time with family, having a shared vision can add a layer of cohesion and purpose to your relationship. These goals can serve as a roadmap, guiding you and your partner through the adventure that your later years will surely be.

Navigating marriage as a senior couple offers a unique blend of challenges and opportunities. It requires an integrated approach that melds emotional resilience with practical wisdom. By harmoniously blending these elements, senior couples can face this new chapter fortified with a sense of purpose and well-being.

About the Author

Nicole Rubin worked in the health insurance industry for years, spending the majority of her time fielding questions from people concerning their coverage and medical bills. She created Insureabilities to provide up-to-date information on the state of health insurance in the U.S.

Guest Blog posting provided by Society of Certified Senior Advisors