7 Steps to Ask Your Spouse For Divorce

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You’ve tried for years, but no matter what you do, you can’t get it to work. You want to divorce your spouse, but how can you talk divorce with your spouse without offending them or starting a full-scale conflict? No optimal approach to ask for a divorce exists.

When telling their spouse they desire a divorce, clients frequently question how to handle the situation amicably. There is no one “correct” response when requesting a divorce, but with advance planning, you can ease a difficult conversation:

1. Prepare Yourself

How you approach the subject of divorce can greatly depend on where your spouse is emotionally at the time.

Is your husband happily unaware? Do you believe your wife’s feelings matches yours? Has the idea of divorce ever been brought up before or will it just suddenly appear?

You can predict how your spouse will respond when you’re about to bring up divorce by knowing how informed they are about the state of your marriage. To help you in organizing your thoughts and getting ready for the conversation you’re about to have, you might think about speaking with a therapist or couple’s counselor. They can assist you in “role-playing” the conversation in which you ask for a divorce and even provide advice on what to say.

2. Choose A Suitable Place and Time

Make sure the time is right before starting the divorce conversation. It’s important to know when to file for divorce.

Plan to have the conversation when your children are not there to avoid any disruptions and to avoid including them in an adult conversation. Consider when and where this conversation should take place. There is no ideal moment to express your intention to get a divorce, but some circumstances are more preferable than others. You might want to hold off on approaching him or her if they have been dealing with personal difficulties like losing their job or losing a loved one. If not, you risk getting a response that is more influenced by the other situations in their life than it is by your statement.

Additionally, pick a location where you can have an undisturbed, quiet talk. This could take place at home, in a counseling office, or in a peaceful café.

3. Keep Your Cool for Your Kids

When children see their parents arguing, it can traumatize them. You are giving them a strong jumpstart in navigating what may initially seem to be an uncertain future by showing them that you can work as a team to peacefully end your marriage. Furthermore, they will know they will be cared for rather than fought over if you demonstrate your support for one another as parenting partners.

4. Be Gentle, But Firm

The way the divorce procedure proceeds can be affected by how you inform your spouse that you want a divorce. Your spouse might not take your request seriously if you bring up divorce while you are irate and upset as opposed to if you do so in a polite, calm, considerate, and respectful manner.

Remember that you have spent a lot of time planning and thinking about your divorce. Most likely, your spouse hasn’t. They will need a moment for the gravity of your announcement to set in if your decision to file for divorce comes as a complete surprise to them.

5. Listen to Their Perspective

Naturally, they’re going to have a response. When they start talking, listen without interrupting. They may about counseling or methods to keep the marriage together. Give them the chance to speak and be heard. Even if you disagree with them, making them feel heard will help maintain peace.

6. Accept Responsibility for Your Decision

To prevent sounding like you are assigning blame in your conversation, use “I” words rather than “You” ones (“You make me unhappy”). There will probably be a range of feelings experienced by both spouses, though not always at the same moment. After telling them you want a divorce, if they are not ready to continue the conversation, don’t press the matter; instead, allow them some time.

7. Be Understanding and Empathetic

They might feel afraid, upset, or angry as a result of not wanting the divorce. They might think that you’ve given up on the marriage. Be receptive to what they have to say, pay attention, and try to understand where they are coming from. You’ve had time to consider and make arrangements for a divorce, but they haven’t. They can feel caught off guard since they didn’t have time to consider or plan for a divorce. It will assist maintain calm if you express some understanding and sympathy for how they are experiencing.

Rebecca Melone

Written By Rebecca Melone

Rebecca Melone established Melone Hatley P.C. in 2014 with the goal of helping families with a range of legal services from estate and family law to traffic tickets and misdemeanor criminal matters.
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