3 considerations before asking for a divorce during the holidays
Is asking for a divorce during the holidays the pinnacle of selfishness or self-sacrifice? Sometimes a relationship gets to the point where you don’t know how you can go another day without making a change. Asking for a divorce during the holidays can take the conversation – and your family dynamic – in many directions.
A Better Direction and a New Lifestyle…Why Wait?
The relief of lifting the heavy weight off your shoulders can be a wonderful feeling when you’re stuck in a broken marriage. Once you’ve decided that a divorce is the right option, you know your direction and can put changes in motion.
Here are three points that may help when considering whether or not you should ask for a divorce during the holidays:
- Are you looking for reasons not to ask for a divorce? Maybe you aren’t ready to move forward at this time. Take the holidays to reflect on your marriage and decide where you see it going.
- Can you handle another holiday living the way things are now? Whether it’s the emotional anguish of waiting to tell your spouse what’s on your mind or the stress of constant fighting, sometimes it’s just too much to handle for one more day.
- Do you have kids living at home? Will telling your spouse you want a divorce put an end to the fighting and arguments that your kids see? Or will it escalate the already high tension during the holidays?
Timing is Everything When Asking for a Divorce During the Holidays
No matter what day of the year, it’s never going to be easy to ask for a divorce. If you ask for a divorce before the holidays, your spouse may refuse to participate in family activities or make a scene if they do show up. If you wait until after the holidays, your spouse may feel betrayed, as if you faked the relationship in front of your loved ones and pretended like nothing was wrong.
One in 12 people are considering asking for a divorce during the holidays this year. The number of women is even higher – one in eight. Trying to manage a divorce on top of the holiday stress is more than most people would want to handle. Here are three suggestions that may help you decide what’s right for you:
- If you can wait until January, do. Let yourself enjoy time with your family and friends. Face the hard conversations after the activities and celebrations have slowed down.
- End your guilt trip before it begins. If your guilt is prompted by your behaviors – things you said and did – make amends, move on and resolve not to repeat negative behaviors. If your guilt is tied into the holidays, keep a perspective: it’s just another date on the calendar. There will be more holidays next year for you to make different choices.
- The days or weeks after asking for a divorce are traumatic for some. Some people remember exactly how they felt and what occurred during that time for years. Do you want your divorce associated with the holidays? The emotional risks may outweigh the rewards, especially if you have children.
Collaborative Divorce: Working from Love and Compassion
There are advantages and disadvantages to asking for a divorce during the holidays. If you examine it carefully, you’ll make the right choice for yourself. Regardless of your timing, collaborative divorce is the model many couples seek for their divorce. Here are a few reasons why:
- Collaborative divorce strives to safeguard the well-being of your family. You are divorcing each other; but, you’ll always have a family together.
- If you have children, they’re the priority when making collaborative divorce decisions.
- Litigious courtroom sessions are painful for everyone. Collaborative divorce focuses on you and your spouse coming to a mutually agreeable outcome out of court, making it the option with less drama.
- Respect for each other while learning new ways to communicate more effectively is another focus of collaborative divorce.
The love you once had may be gone, but you still care and want the best outcome for each other. Collaborative divorce works to make that happen. With collaborative divorce, you and your spouse control the process – not your attorneys and not a judge. If asking for a divorce during the holidays is on your mind, contact a legal professional or communication specialist at Best Legal Choices today.
Specializing in collaborative divorce, mediation, and family and juvenile law matters, Kristine has over two decades of experience working with children and families experiencing difficult transitional life events.