Devito/Perlman split indicative of growing “gray divorce” trend

Well-known and widely popular actors Danny DeVito and Rhea Perlman are known by millions of people for more than just their acting chops. In a town and industry where marital constancy seems rare and celebrity high-asset divorce seems far more the norm, the couple’s long-tenured union has often been cited by interviewers and reporters. In fact, this year marked the 30th anniversary of DeVito and Perlman’s marriage.

Apparently, there will be no more celebrations to mark.

In fact, the couple announced last week that, following three decades of marriage, they are seeking a divorce. DeVito and Perlman are 67 and 64, respectively.

High-profile Hollywood dissolutions often seem to centrally involve issues such as property division (Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore; Mel Gibson and Oksana Grigorieva), child custody and visitation (Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes; Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger) or matters surrounding prenuptial agreements or governing law concerning asset distribution.

According to mainstream reports, that does not seem to be the case with DeVito and Perlman. Although some media outlets are referencing DeVito’s infidelity as a cause for the split, many stories simply stress marital drift and the growing phenomenon often referred to as “gray divorce.”

A study issued by Bowling Green State University indicates that the divorce rate for couples 50 and older has more than doubled across the country since 1990.

And here’s a telling statistic, which make the Devito/Perlman split seem anything but an oddity: Whereas only about one in 10 persons divorcing in 1990 was over 50 years of age, that number in 2012 has risen dramatically to one in four.

Source: WKMG Orlando, “Divorce rates rising among older people,” Oct. 29, 2012

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