In many cases of a struggling or failing marriage, it can be difficult to determine whether divorce is the best course of action. This decision can be complicated even further in marriages involving children, especially younger children. After all, most people assume their children will benefit from growing up in one household with married parents. In reality, however, this is not always the case.
Although divorce is certainly not for every struggling couple, it is beneficial for many. Nonetheless, whether or not to go through with a divorce is not a decision that should be taken lightly. To help you find a starting point to determine if divorce is for you, it is important to consider instances where divorce is often the best course of action.
Some Cases Where Divorce May Prove Beneficial
No two relationships are the same, and as a result, no two divorces are the same. Here are some general circumstances where divorce may serve as the best option:
Sadly, there are no shortage of relationships that are unhealthy, dysfunctional, and even unsafe for those involved. Sometimes, the family dynamic is so severely damaged that it is just not feasible to continue forward within the marriage. If your current marriage involves emotional, verbal, or physical abuse, or all three, divorce can provide a safe way out. In cases of abuse, trying to repair such severe damage to the marriage dynamic is often unsuccessful and staying in the marriage can prove unsafe and psychologically unhealthy.
If one spouse currently suffers from a substance dependency and continuously refuses to receive treatment, it could be the time to consider divorce. Not only does substance misuse put a sometimes irreparable strain on the adult relationship, but the safety of the sober spouse or children could be at risk. At the very least, substance dependency can cause enormous financial strain that may be difficult to resolve during the marriage.
Similar to substance dependency, a mental illness can put a serious strain on a relationship. However, does this mean you should leave your spouse as soon as they receive a serious mental health diagnosis, like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or borderline personality disorder? No, it most certainly does not. However, if your partner is actively refusing to receive treatment for their condition, the situation may become too difficult to manage. If an individual refuses to attend treatment for a serious mental health condition, and the result is putting significant strain on the marriage or overall family dynamic, divorce is sometimes the best option.
Another common situation that may necessitate divorce is infidelity within the marriage. While every marriage is different, infidelity can feel like the ultimate betrayal and constitutes a breach of trust between partners. As such, infidelity often leads to irreparable damage to the union. Often, following instances of infidelity, marriages are simply unable to return to their former, healthy state.
However, infidelity is not always a circumstance that must lead to the end of a marriage. Although it is a devastating situation, some couples are able to repair the relationship and return to a place of mutual understanding and respect. Receiving professional help is a necessity in these cases, however, and its importance should not be discounted. After infidelity, the decision to divorce is highly dependent on the individual couple and their unique set of circumstances.
Lack of Affection
In the beginning of most marriages, affection and sexual compatibility are not an issue. However, over time, many couples begin to feel as if they are no longer as affectionate as they once were. For some, this constitutes a simple lack of conversation, physical touch, and verbal expression necessary to remain connected and intimate. Others may find their sexual desires are no longer compatible, or that one partner has a lack of interest while the other feels unfulfilled.
Many people experiencing a lack of affection find that the issue is well-addressed during marital counseling. Others find it difficult to reach a resolution that is mutually agreeable to both spouses. Could you envision a future where your marriage has returned to being happy and healthy, or at least comfortable, state? If picking up the pieces seems like an impossibility to you, then it is reasonable to begin considering divorce as an option.
Why Divorce is Sometimes Better Than Staying in an Unhealthy Marriage With Children
In many of the above circumstances, opting for a divorce can be the best decision for a couple, especially when the alternative is remaining in an unhealthy or unhappy relationship. However, there is much more to consider if you are a parent debating whether to file for a divorce. Many parents consider staying together for the kids in an effort to continue to provide a stable home environment.
However, if your marriage involves children, the most stable option may not be to stay in the relationship, especially if the only reason is that your children could benefit. Consider, in part, the example you’re setting for your children. Are you regularly exposing your child to an unhealthy or highly problematic relationship dynamic? Even if you don’t mean to, you could be leaving a damaging impression on your children. Being raised in a hostile environment can do far more damage to children than seeing their parents divorce.
Sometimes, a single-parent household is a far more stable environment for a growing child when compared to a household featuring a troubled marriage. It is often better to be a single parent than to continuously model an unhealthy relationship dynamic to your children. During a child’s formative years, unstable or dysfunctional environments can be especially damaging as they grow into adulthood. In addition, consider that many experts believe that the type of relationship children see modeled during those formative years is the type of relationship the child may be driven to seek later in life. Is your child emulating your relationship a positive thing?
Consult With a Stange Divorce Attorney
Have you made the difficult decision to divorce your partner? If so, it is unwise to begin divorce proceedings without an experienced, dependable lawyer at your side. When you work with our Midwest divorce attorneys, you will receive support from someone with a deep understanding of the family court system and the divorce process. We can help you present the best possible case that allows you to preserve your assets and determine an arrangement that adheres to the best interests of your children. Reach out to Stange Law Firm to schedule a consultation today.