You have been through tough times with your spouse. Perhaps those struggles made your marriage stronger for a while, or maybe they caused even more resentment between you. It is not unusual for couples to have moments or even years during their marriage when they contemplate divorce. Those who stick it out can find common ground with their spouses, or they may feel they have wasted the best years of their lives.
How do you know if divorce is the best option for you? Divorce is certainly not something to take lightly. It often means financial setbacks and struggles. Even in unhappy marriages, a divorce can be emotionally traumatizing. If you have children, you also must consider how a breakup will affect them. Nevertheless, remaining in a stale or miserable marriage may not be in your best interests, and you may be looking for signs that the time is right to end it.
Are these negotiable to you?
Your emotions are not always the best way to measure the situation. A month or year of tension between you and your spouse may be the wrong reason to divorce if the conflict may eventually reach a resolution. However, if you are experiencing any of the following scenarios, you may want to seek a better understanding of your options:
- The problems in your marriage consume your thoughts.
- Your spouse has cut you off from your family and friends.
- You spend more time thinking about how happy you would be alone than you do thinking good things about your spouse.
- Your spouse has forced you to give up your faith or change parts of your personality.
- You have to beg or nag to obtain things that are important to you.
- Your marriage prevents you from reaching your personal goals.
- It seems like every conversation with your spouse ends in an argument.
Of course, if you or your children are victims of physical, sexual or verbal abuse from your spouse, many counselors would say you have an obligation to leave. Additionally, a spouse who refuses to seek help for a substance abuse issue or to relinquish extramarital affairs may be placing your well-being in danger. These behaviors are not likely to change.
While making this decision is not something you can do with a checklist, you may be able to plot a course of action if you have reliable answers to your many questions. Learning about your rights and what you can expect from the New Jersey divorce process may provide the tools you need to make a difficult but well-informed decision.