All marriages require long and serious work, but eventually, some of them come to an end in a not-quite-amicable way. However, what to do if you have kids and lots of mutual friends or just appreciate all the happy memories you’ve created together? Indeed, sometimes trying to get along is the best-case scenario for the end of a marriage.
If you and your spouse are ready to work towards getting a friendly divorce or you have no idea how to leave a marriage peacefully, you will find some helpful tips in this article.
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When Is the Time to Leave Your Marriage?
You cannot find a one-size-fits-all answer to when to leave a marriage. Since every couple’s story is unique, only these two people can define the right time for that serious conversation. Moreover, sometimes, it is really hard to notice the red flags in the relationships.
If you struggle to find the best time or reason to file for divorce, here are some strong signals that would tell you when and how to end a marriage:
- You’ve Stopped Fighting Completely
Weird as it may seem, constant arguments with a partner may be a sign of natural and healthy relations. If you suddenly realize that you don’t want to fight over your spouse’s bad habits or defend your opinion in a debate, it’s a worrying sign.
- You Have No Intimacy with Your Spouse
Having no kisses, hugs, or any other physical interactions with your spouse can be explained by the so-called “roommate syndrome,” when romantic relationships eventually turn into platonic and cool off. You may attempt to bring the romance back into your marriage, but if you have tried all the methods and they did not work, it may be time to ponder over divorce.
- You Cannot Help but Feel Resentment
Of course, marriage does not mean that you only feel admiration towards each other. Sometimes, all spouses can be unbearable, but we still love them! However, if resentment and irritation are the only feelings in your marriage, it’s probably because it is already breaking.
- The Idea of Leaving Your Spouse Does Not Scare You Anymore
Some time ago, you could not imagine your existence without your special someone. Today, your new life is getting more and more vivid, elaborate, and even tempting. You do not think over the problem of how to end a marriage with someone you love. It may be time to take this first decisive step when you finally have a clear-cut action plan.
- You Can’t Relax and Be Yourself When Your Spouse Is Around
Perhaps the best thing in life is not being afraid to be insecure or goofy in front of your spouse because you know they love and accept you anyway. That’s a sign of a healthy relationship. If you suddenly realize that this feeling is long gone, it’s time to consider how to slowly leave a relationship.
- You Spend Your Free Time Apart from Each Other
It’s not about that one or two Saturdays per month when you are shopping with your friends while your husband is out fishing. Spending all your evenings, weekends, and even vacations separately definitely means that your marriage does not work out anymore.
What Is the First Thing to Do When Leaving a Marriage?
One of the most frequent questions in divorce-related forums is: “When leaving my husband, what do I do first?” Talking about an amicable scenario, you should begin with a sincere conversation. If you have already passed this stage, get acquainted with the following steps to leaving a marriage:
- Discuss All the Essential Matters with Your Spouse
Now that you have shared your opinion on your marriage and decided that it is time to end it, you also need to discuss all the important things concerning your finances, assets, the future of your children, etc.
You will need to decide where your kids will live and study, how to share your property and money, and whether one of you requires any financial support. Agreeing on these aspects is vital for obtaining an uncontested divorce quickly and without any hassle.
- Talk to Your Children
The news about your divorce is definitely heartbreaking for your kids, but hiding the truth would be the worst thing you could ever do in this situation. Your task is to reassure them that your marriage dissolution is not their fault and that you are still their parents who love them no matter what. Obviously, it would be better if you could handle this conversation together with your spouse.
- Collect All the Documents and Records
Firstly, you need the necessary documents to start preparing for the divorce process. Secondly, having all the important paperwork will make you feel more confident in your decision. Making copies and keeping them in a safe place is also essential.
- Arrange Your New Place of Residency
If you are not going to live in your family house, you will need to find a place you can call your home. In case you want to stay with your relatives or friends, discuss all the important matters with them and arrange the moving date. If you are going to rent a flat or a house, you need to estimate your budget, research the market, and consult with a real estate agent.
- Take Care of Your Finances
If you have a joint bank account with your spouse, it is certainly the time to open your own. While taking care of this matter, it’s important to ponder over your financial abilities. If budgeting is a task you have never really been concerned with, it is best to start by tracking your income and expenses and preparing a monthly budget with mandatory costs, such as rent, insurance, bills, etc., and savings.
- Bonus Tip: Consult with an Attorney
Even if your divorce is amicable, you may still require legal assistance. An experienced lawyer will provide you with legal advice and help you prepare the paperwork needed for your case. If you cannot afford an attorney, you can consider other options, such as online divorce services.
Tips for Leaving Your Marriage
Undoubtedly, staying on good terms with your soon-to-be ex is the best way to divorce. However, it is difficult not to get overemotional at this point in your life, so receiving some advice on handling this process and getting along with the other party is definitely what most spouses need.
If you want to remain friends, here are some useful divorce tips on how to end a marriage amicably:
- Don’t Move Too Quickly
You’ve probably made a firm decision about leaving a marriage and crafted a clear-cut plan, but if you want to have a friendly divorce, you’d better be careful when announcing this news. After all, a too quick divorce is rarely an amicable one.
Firstly, you should ensure that the other party is not going through any other tough events; otherwise, your announcement may demoralize them even more. Secondly, choose the most suitable place and time for having this conversation and prepare a brief speech to feel confident and calm. Your spouse will surely appreciate your courtesy.
- Be Direct but Considerate and Sincere
If you think it’s really important to be straightforward with your partner about the reasons for divorce, you should undoubtedly go for it. However, do not be too tough and try to avoid words that can potentially hurt them.
Tell your spouse about your feelings and thoughts, explain the reasons for such a decision, but emphasize that you hope to remain on good terms. Having an open conversation is paramount not only for marriage but also for friendship, so show your partner that you are honest with them.
- Be Respectful in the Way You Talk about Each Other
You may have hundreds of reasons to end this marriage, some of which won’t leave your head. But if you want to remain friends after your divorce, you should learn to respect each other and overcome past resentment.
Never badmouth your spouse in front of your mutual friends, relatives, and especially kids. Ultimately, everything you say may be conveyed to them, causing unnecessary confusion and arguments that will only spoil your relationships. Besides, thinking about your close people who would not want to take any sides is also important.
- Talk about the Future
You may ask, “Why on earth should I talk about my future with the person I plan to part ways with?”. However, if you have kids, lots of mutual friends, and years of happy memories, talking about it is the best thing you can do if you want to keep your relationships warm.
Of course, we do not urge you to share your dreams and plans with your spouse, but planning some casual, friendly events or discussing how to share the parenting time is definitely a good start for a friendship after divorce.
- Consider Family Counseling
Both of you may have lots of hard feelings towards each other that may hinder you from fostering good relationships. If you feel like you should give way to emotions more peacefully and productively, family counseling may be the best option. An experienced professional will provide practical advice on how to have a friendly divorce and handle your feelings.
- Filing for an Uncontested Divorce on Your Own
The best part about the amicable divorce process is that you can file for it without involving a lawyer. If you and your spouse have agreed on all the important aspects, you can file for an uncontested divorce on your own and save a lot of money.
All you have to do in this case is prepare paperwork and file it with the court. After that, you and your spouse may be required to come to a short final hearing, where your divorce will be finalized. Of course, it is also advisable to get acquainted with the laws of your state to have a fast process and avoid making mistakes during the steps.
- End the Relationship on a Good Note
If you had the question, “Can you still be friends with your ex?” when you began reading this article, now you definitely know that the answer is “Yes!” After all, you have so many warm memories and things that can keep you together as friends after divorce.
Someone may claim that divorce is always a tough process that leaves a mark on an ex-couple. But why don’t you try to make it as peaceful as possible? Who knows, maybe you and your spouse will remain close friends for life!