After a 40 year relationship, Al and Tipper Gore have decided to separate, leaving the 61 year old former second lady with the challenge of reinventing herself.
Boomer divorce expert Erica Manfred, author of He's History You're Not; Surviving Divorce After 40 comments on how Gore, and other boomer women, can make new lives for themselves after divorce.
“Some women tend to freeze and hide after divorce,” Manfred says. “Luckily times have changed. We crones don’t have to live in huts in the forest anymore and suffer from toothlessness, hideous noses, or a wardrobe of rags.”
Divorce is different for women under and over 40. Even amicable splits, like the Gore’s seems to be, are stressful for older women because there losses are greater. They have been married the longest and take the hardest hit both financially and emotionally
“Once you’re over 40 or 45 some of the possibilities younger women take for granted dry up,” she says. “Yes there are available men, but they’re a lot fewer and further between. Older women have to deal with age discrimination when it comes to jobs, especially if they’ve been home taking care of the kids and don’t have a career.”
Fortunately for Tipper Gore, she has established herself as an author and photographer, recently releasing the Tipper Gore Photography website. For many other boomer divorcees, however, finding the right career path can be difficult.
Manfred says that for women who have never had a career, going back to school is probably the best way for a woman to get on her feet and establish a life for herself.