Just even thinking about a divorce is incredibly difficult and for some the process starts weeks, months or years after tying the knot. Sometimes little signs start to creep up early and other times it can be a sudden change that drastically alters your future as a couple.
After all, marriage is tough. It’s not something you can idly go about and hope to improve on. It takes work every day to better and build upon it. Accepting that the end may be close is a tough pill to swallow, but it might be time to start examining the signs a bit closer.
Unfortunately, divorce is still rather common in the United States and lots of others are looking at possible fractures in their marriage. Before taking the divorce step, try communicating with your partner or looking at a few of the possible signs that you’re ready to end your marriage.
You’re Planning Your Future Without Your Partner
At the beginning of your marriage, you were likely making plans together. What you were going to name your children, the type of house you wanted, future vacations or activities to do together. Since then, however, your future plans include more “I” and less “we”. You start to value different things and ideas. These values could be completely different from one another, driving a wedge further between you.
Thoughts start to drift back to your past single life or what would it be like if you were single again. What would you do? What could you accomplish? How would things be different?
Instead of thinking about that beach getaway you two have talked about previously, maybe you’re thinking more and more about the March Madness weekend in Las Vegas with your college buddies or a spa retreat with your closest girlfriends. There’s no problem in planning trips with your friends, but if it’s coming at the expense of doing something with your partner, that’s a big warning sign.
Communication is Lost, and It’s Not as Important to Patch Things Up
Ask pretty much anyone in a long-term relationship and they all say the same thing: communication is vital. A misunderstood phrase or tone taken out of context can lead to big fights, angry moments and tense situations. “Communication is key” is a mantra you often hear over and over again.
Communication is what helps many married couples resolve most issues with each other. Each couple may be different, some might be more direct while others have their own unique ways of resolving issues.
But what happens when communication falls apart and you realize you don’t mind if the latest issue in your marriage is resolved or not? This is an issue that can slowly wear on you over time. At first, it’s letting something small go by. Then, it becomes a bigger issue. It gets so big that it either boils over or worse, it just doesn’t matter anymore. Not the kind where it’s something you can look over or move on from, but it just doesn’t matter what the outcome is.
When you’re losing the desire to keep open communication, it’s another sign that the marriage could be ending.
Finances Become a Bigger Issue
There is no perfect “by the book way” to handle your finances in a marriage. Some couples share all of their income, others set a certain proportion together and others may have their own set of affairs.
If the finances become a touchy subject, it could be an early warning sign. What was saved for “us” turns into what “I want to do with my money”. Things like buying and maintaining a house, purchasing a car, etc. are all big financial decisions that need to be discussed among both sides.
If one of you is making big financial decisions without consulting the other, it could be a negative sign. What is worse is if after the big decision was made, the other person is completely apathetic. Suddenly, each person is making their own financial decisions or trying to hold onto their personal money more and more. Maybe a new credit card or bank account is opened in secret or a separate investments are occurring.
It’s helpful for a couple to be financially transparent with each other, so no secrets are kept.
How to Know If You’re Really Ready to End Your Marriage
You’ve Already Started Planning for the Divorce
In your mind, you already have it figured out. You’re going through the house, looking at everything that is yours. You’re going over your finances, deciding how everything will be divided. Maybe if you think you’re moving out, you’ve started looking at apartments or houses in the area. You’ve done some preliminary searching on the best divorce lawyer out there. If you have children, you’re imagining how custody will be divided.
If you’ve already started visualizing everything, then you probably know that you’re ready to end your marriage. Of course, you will want to go over all your options for your personal situation and find the best outcome for you. Just know that it is not an easy decision and you could face a difficult road ahead.