No one really gets into a marriage thinking that they might have to get a divorce later on down the road. And, even for those who may get married for the wrong reasons, divorce is never an easy option. After all, you still end up making plans and creating dreams together as a couple. When that ends, for one reason or another, breaking up is a serious and tough nut to crack.
Making the decision to file for divorce is not an easy one – as many others will tell you. Before you actually make the decision, you have to go through a lot of things. You’ll be asking yourself a lot of questions, consulting a lot of people. Here are some of the toughest questions that you will need answered.
1. Is there enough of the marriage left to salvage?
This question could very well be the hardest to answer. That is why I wrote it down first. Who can ever say that there is enough of the marriage to save? Or, who can say that there is no hope? At the end of the day, the answer to this question will only come from you. Only you will know the answer to this question.
Of course, arriving at the answer is not an easy task. You might even need some help to discern this. It is a good idea to talk it over with your spouse, if this is possible. You can also talk to trusted friends and relatives who will give you advice. More so, you ought to get in touch with a professional therapist or counselor, someone who is not involved personally in your life. An objective point of view is always helpful.
2. Do you still love your spouse?
This is another very hard question that only you can answer. Before you actually ask for a divorce, you need to be able to unequivocally say that you do not have any of those feelings – love – for your spouse. This could be because I am old school, but I do believe that if you still love your partner, then you can still try to work things out. Of course, this is barring any other complications such as abuse in any form. If your best reason for divorce is that ‘it doesn’t seem to be working’ however, I suggest you delve a bit deeper. If you find that there is still love between the two of you, then it might not be the right time to consider getting divorced.
3. Is one of you an addict?
When I say addict, I am referring to various issues – gambling, drugs, alcohol, etc. If one of you has an addiction, it is going to be the source of unrest in your marriage for as long as it is not treated. If at least one of you suffers from this problem and that person is not willing to seek professional help or treatment, then you just might have to consider divorce. For as long as that problem is not solved, your marriage can only continue to degrade and perhaps ultimately breakdown.
4. Is one of you having an affair with someone else?
Neither of you may be addicted to gambling or some other substance, but if a third party comes into the picture, then divorce could very well be the option to choose. However, you have to realize that many married couples have gone beyond affairs to rebuild their marriage. What you need to determine at this point is whether the one who has been having an affair is willing to go the distance to rebuild the marriage. This means totally putting an end to the affair and stopping any communication with the third party. If that step cannot be taken, then divorce it is.
5. Is your marriage an abusive one?
Perhaps your partner has always been faithful and has never taken on any other partner. However, if there is some form of abuse in the marriage, it could just be as serious. Abuse can come in many forms – physical, verbal, and emotional. Whichever form of abuse you may be taking (or giving), it does not lessen the pain and the problems. If the abuser does not seek help in order to stop the abuse, then the answer is simple: divorce.
6. Do you really want a divorce or do you just want to threaten?
Sometimes, due to the rush of emotions, a person thinks he or she wants a divorce, but in reality, this want may just be a threat. You need to sit down and really think about it long and hard. Is it really a divorce you want or are you merely testing the waters to see what the idea of divorce can do to the marriage?
7. Why do you want a divorce?
Last but definitely not the least, you need to ask yourself why you want (or think you want) a divorce. You can go back to number 6 above and reflect on it more. You ought to delve as deep as you can, no matter how painful it will be, and pinpoint concrete reasons why you are considering a divorce. Only when you have the real reasons can you decide for sure if you really want to go through a divorce.
For some, divorce is the only answer. For others, they may choose to pick up the pieces and start rebuilding. Whatever it is that you choose, it is my prayer that you make the right decision for yourself and that you do so without any regrets.