During the time you’ve been married, you’ve had to handle some challenging conversations as a couple. Now, you’re about to have one of the most difficult conversations two people can have in a marriage. The decision to get a divorce is not to be made lightly, and you may be worried about your spouse’s reaction. Telling your spouse you want a divorce does require some planning. The San Diego divorce mediation experts from Divorce Options San Diego suggest working through these steps can help the conversation go as smoothly as possible.
Take Time to Fully Think It Through
The statement that you want a divorce is a showstopper, and you need to make absolutely sure this is what you want. No matter what has happened, it’s important to be clear when you speak to your spouse. Spend some time thinking about your reasons for the divorce so you won’t be tempted to change your mind after you bring it up.
Start the Conversation When You Have Time to Talk
Your spouse will probably have questions and is likely to have a negative reaction that will take time to work through. As a gesture of respect, don’t just say you want a divorce right before you walk into a family event or try to go to bed for the night. Look for a window of opportunity, such as a weekend afternoon when you’re both home, to make your request for a divorce.
Make Sure to Stay Calm & Kind
If your spouse gets angry, your reaction can bring the conversation back to a more peaceful level. No matter what happens, try to stay calm, and speak in an even voice. Try to remember that you’ve had time to think about this. Your spouse might react strongly if this is the first time he or she has heard about your unhappiness. Keep in mind this doesn’t mean you must take abuse. If your spouse begins to yell or make physical threats, do what you must to protect your safety.
Avoid Placing Blame
You have your reasons for the divorce, and they may include negative things your spouse has done or continues to do today. However, things will go much better if you don’t make your spouse feel like he or she needs to defend him or herself. Try to use “I” statements that describe how you feel rather than “you” statements that list your spouse’s transgressions.
Be Gentle but Firm
Your spouse might try to talk you out of the divorce. For instance, he or she may offer to change his or her behavior or try to make you feel guilty by bringing up your children or shared memories. When this happens, simply restate your belief that a divorce is best.
Wait to Discuss the Details
Sharing that you want a divorce creates an emotionally charged situation, and it’s best to avoid discussing other hot topics, such as who is going to get the house. There’s plenty of time to work out these details, and this process will be easier when you work with a neutral third party, such as a divorce mediator. Let your spouse know you can work those things out later and that you hope to do so amicably.
If you’re at the point where you think divorce is the right choice for you, there are alternatives to hiring a lawyer and having to make countless court appearances. The expert San Diego divorce mediators at Divorce Options San Diego provide a one-stop shop, offering comprehensive services that cover all the psychological, financial, legal, and practical aspects of honorable, respectful divorce agreements, from beginning to end. Give us a call today at 858-281-2628.