7 Things to Contemplate When You’re Considering Divorce
If you have found this article, you have probably been having thoughts about divorcing your spouse and decided to pair it with some Googling. You have likely heard all sorts of internet opinions. Some will tell you if you’re considering divorce your marriage is over. Some will tell you a bunch of reasons why not to get divorced. Everyone has an opinion. And you know that old saying about opinions. Well here’s one of ours!
Opinion: most people think about divorcing their partner at some point in their marriage!
But there is a big difference between considering divorce and actually going through with it.
At Rockville Psychotherapy and Coaching, we will not tell you what to do. What to do when you’re considering divorce is a decision you will have to make for yourself.
The biggest piece of advice we have to give is: do not make this decision lightly! If you are considering divorce, there are many things you will have to contemplate besides just what you think will make you happy.
Here are 7 major things to take into account:
(1) Just Because You’re Considering Divorce Does Not Make it Inevitable
Many people think that if they are considering divorce that means it is inevitable. This is just not true! It is actually quite normal for people to think about divorcing their spouse at some point in their marriage, especially if it is a long one. And that’s because life brings many challenges that can take a toll on any marriage.
So–the biggest piece of advice we have to offer here is: sleep on it and don’t make any hasty decisions.
Talking to your spouse about divorce is a conversation that is very hard to recant.
Common reasons people consider divorcing
Some common reasons why people contemplate divorce include:
- Lack of communication
- A “winning is everything” mentality
- Financial stress
- Major life events (even happy ones)
It is important to honestly ask yourself–can these problems be resolved? Do you want them to be resolved?
Divorce is a big decision and should not be taken lightly. Before you make any decisions, it is important to ask yourself these questions.
(2) Ask Yourself Some Other Basic Questions
Before giving serious thought to divorcing your spouse, ask yourself some important questions:
- What led to me feeling this way?
- What problems would a divorce solve?
- What are the biggest issues in our marriage?
- Have I exhausted all other options to save solve these problems and my marriage?
- Am I willing to compromise and work towards a resolution with my spouse?
- Are my expectations realistic for the outcome of the divorce process?
- Am I emotionally ready to go through the divorce process and its aftermath?
- Do I have a support system in place to help me through this process?
- What is my plan for life after my divorce?
By asking yourself these questions, you can get an idea of how to proceed. Often problems that feel life-changing and earth-shattering can be resolved (although they may require some additional help).
(3) Be Prepared for a Change in Your Style of Living
This is something that most people do not readily think about when considering divorce. You will likely have to pick up some slack that your ex previously helped with. This could include:
- Packing lunches for the kids
- Preparing kids for school
- Putting kids to bed (depending on how young your kids are)
- Doing chores around the house, like cleaning and taking out the trash
- Communicating with your kid’s schools
(4) Prepare Financially
One of the most important things to think about when you are considering divorce is how it will affect your finances. You will be relying solely on your income.
You may also have to pay for some things you are not used to paying for, such as:
- Clothes shopping
- Food shopping
- Health insurance
If you are not accustomed to paying for these things, today’s living prices may be a very unwelcome surprise.
So if you are seriously contemplating divorce; make sure you have financially planned accordingly.
Depending on how serious you are about divorce, it may also be helpful to start inventorying your personal assets.
(5) Think About How Your Kids Will Be Impacted
Another key element to think about is how a divorce will affect your kids. This depends on their age and personal maturity level.
If you choose to get divorced, it is important to remember that your kids will be going through a difficult time too. They may not understand why their parents are divorcing and they may feel like it’s their fault.
If you do decide to get divorced, start thinking about how to approach that conversation with them. It is important to talk with them about the divorce in an age-appropriate way and make sure they know that you both still love them very much. Think about how you would want to be treated if the tables were turned. You know your kids better than anyone, after all.
A number of studies have indicated that there are situations where being unhappily married is more detrimental to your kids than a divorce. This is especially true if your marriage is high-conflict.
Again–at the end of the day, you know your kids better than anyone else does.
(6) Be Realistic
When considering divorce, it is important to be realistic about your situation. Divorce can be a long and difficult process, and it is not always the best solution. It may be helpful to talk to a professional or a close confidant who has gone through a similar process. They can provide insight into what you should expect and how to best prepare for it.
(7) Consider Bringing in an Expert
There are many situations where bringing in an expert is a smart move. And we are not talking about lawyers.
Some examples include:
- Couples Therapist
- Divorce Coach
- Co-Parenting Coach
As we said before, just because you’re considering divorce does not make it inevitable. You may decide it’s best to try and work things out. Seeking help from someone like a divorce coach can give you a realistic understanding of your options and what is best for your personal situation.
What is a Divorce Coach?
A divorce coach is a trained professional who can help you navigate the more difficult aspects of the divorce process–whether you are considering divorce or beyond. A divorce coach is not a therapist. They are not concerned with your childhood or your past. Their focus is on where you are and where you want to be.
It is not their job to judge, criticize, or tell you what to do. They will not tell you to definitely get divorced–or stay together. Instead, a divorce coach will act as a thinking partner, creating a comfortable space for a very uncomfortable time in your life.
How can a divorce coach help if you’re considering divorce?
It is not the job of a divorce coach to tell you what you should do. Instead, they will explore your situation and ask you questions such as:
- How have you gotten to this stage?
- What is going through your head when you are considering divorce?
- What issues are currently happening in your marriage?
- What do you want for your personal life?
- What do you want for your children’s lives?
- What obstacles are stopping you from being your best self?
- How can we tackle those obstacles?
And if you decide to go through with a divorce, they will work with you and provide guidance every step along the way–from how to talk to your kids to how to navigate a co-parenting relationship with an ex.
A divorce coach’s job is to meet you where you are and work with you from that point onward.
Moshe Ben-Lev is a Divorce Coach Who Can Help
I am Moshe Ben-Lev–a Certified Divorce and Co-Parenting Coach based in Maryland. However, my licensure allows me to see clients all over the world!
My approach is client-centered and children-focused. Wherever you are in your personal journey–considering divorce and beyond–I will walk with you every step of the way.
To learn more about divorce and co-parent coaching and what a divorce coach can do for you, click the button below for a free, 45-minute discovery session.