What should you do if your spouse asks for a divorce?

| Feb 5, 2021 | family law |

Every year, hundreds of couples file for divorce in the state of New Jersey. For some, their partner’s request for one comes as a shock. For others, divorce seems like the inevitable end to a long and stressful marriage. In any case, how you react when your spouse tells you that they want a divorce can have a huge impact on your future together.

What should you do when your spouse asks for a divorce?

When your spouse asks for a divorce, your first instinct might be to beg, plead, criticize, manipulate and do anything you can think of to make your spouse change their mind. However, manipulative behavior will just push them away even more. Instead, listen to your spouse’s criticisms and have an honest conversation about whether you think you can save your marriage. If they’re open to reconciliation, be willing to get help or attend couple’s therapy.

You should also give your spouse some space during this time. The two of you might have to live separately for a while. Don’t try to win back their affections with excessive praise and attention–instead, give them time to figure out where they want to go from here. If they’re not happy in their marriage, staying together isn’t fair to either of you.

Ultimately, you might want to meet with a divorce attorney to discuss your options. Talking to an attorney doesn’t automatically mean that you have to get divorced–it just helps you prepare for the possibility.

What could an attorney do for you?

An attorney might be able to suggest divorce alternatives, like attending therapy. If you know that your marriage can’t be saved, an attorney could help you file for divorce while respecting yourself and your former spouse.