A friend (Michelle) recently helped her youngest son move out of home, and suddenly she and her husband are free from kids.
No more taxi service. No more dealing with surly teenagers or hungover young adults.
Space for themselves.
They decided to go away for the weekend to celebrate, and to spend some time together. Both of them are successful professionals with demanding careers, and between these demands and those of their children they haven’t found (or made) much time for themselves in recent years.
When they returned I spoke to Anne to ask her how it was, and also how Grant was.
Her response amused me. She said: ‘he is pretty much the same as I remember’.
It turns out that this was a good thing, but it highlights the worrying issue that in all of the busyness of modern life it is so easy to lose sight of your relationship with your spouse.
This probably helps explain the rise in divorce rates for those over 50 – the so-called Silver Splitters.
If your relationship takes a back seat to the day to day aspects of work and family life, once the kids have moved out of home you can find yourself sitting down opposite your spouse wondering who they are, and why you got married to them in the first place.
Warning – financial content
But divorce is bad for your financial health, and for your prospects in retirement.
So here’s some retirement planning advice you won’t commonly receive: do something to surprise your spouse or partner and show them how much they mean to you – it might save your marriage, and also your retirement plans.