Divorce does not usually come from nowhere. Usually, you will see divorce warning signs. You may feel them in yourself or see them in your spouse, or both. Wherever they emerge, though, they can leave you feeling sad, confused, frustrated or even angry.
When marital problems develop, you may wonder whether the marriage can recover. It begins, of course, with identifying the signs early. Learning to see issues and deciding how to address them might help. If you are worried about the health of your marriage, keep an eye out for these divorce warning signs.
1. Uncomfortable Interactions
If you or your spouse have anxiety about the time you spend together, it may be a sign of problems between you. Not every discussion will be pleasant but doing things together should not feel uncomfortable. When every meal or chore you do together seems difficult, it may signal deeper issues for you. Marriages tend to work best when you can feel comfortable together. If your least favorite time is what you spend with your spouse, you may have a reason for concern.
2. Fighting on Personal Terms
Spouses will disagree. Arguments that turn into fights, though, can be important divorce warning signs. You may feel you or your spouse is crossing lines with name-calling or other attacks. If you argue by attacking each other instead of discussing the topic, it may be a sign of tensions growing.
3. Withdrawing from Conflict
The flip side of fighting too much is avoidance. Some couples live like ships passing in the night. Some of this might be part of living busy lives. Still, if you never do things together, or make plans to specifically avoid time together, it may be a symptom of a larger problem. Preferring to stay away from each other tends not to be a good sign of a healthy marriage.
4. Loss of Respect
Sometimes how you talk to or about each other creates divorce warning signs. Do you or your spouse complain about each other to friends and family? Do you ridicule or talk down to each other in private? These can reveal a loss of love or respect for each other.
Many couples tell jokes at each other’s expense, of course. If it crosses a line into cruelty or disregard for each other’s feelings, there may be deeper issues at work. Your words and your behavior matter. Using them to carelessly hurt a spouse can suggest problems in your marriage.
Finally, you should trust the way you feel. No one is happy all the time, but if being around your spouse makes you unhappy, that can be cause for concern. One of the most basic divorce warning signs comes from your gut. If you feel unhappy most of the time you are together, there may be a reason for it. Listen to yourself and trust your instincts.
Combatting Divorce Warning Signs
If you notice some of these divorce warning signs at home, it may not be too late. Often it comes down to communication. Learning to talk through your feelings openly and respectfully can sometimes work wonders for you. Still, just avoiding problems and hoping they will go away seldom works. If you are worried divorce may be on the horizon for you, contact one of the professionals at Best Legal Choices to discuss your options. A neutral, communication coach can help with insight, education, and a plan of action, which can help couples recalibrate, and create the future best for them.
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.