Should I divorce my husband / wife?
If you are asking yourself whether you should divorce your spouse, you are not in an easy spot. It means you got married with your souse whilst you were probably in love and felt that you could be spending the rest of your life with him/her. Now, you find yourself in a completely different reality, so much must have happened, so many emotional turbulences occurred and so much effort has probably taken place to save the situation and yet you are not sure whether you should stay married or get divorced. So what is the real answer to ‘should I divorce my husband/wife’?
No simple answer
Of course you have probably gone over the pros and cons in your head. If you’ve tried marriage counseling and it didn’t help that much, then you are perhaps even clearer that there is little hope left. You also know that general answers won’t suffice as every situation is unique. Some couples choose to stay together for the kids, some end up regretting it and some are happy they stuck it out. Others can’t put up with the coldness or abusive situations and nobody in the world has the right to tell them otherwise. Nobody has the right to abuse another human being. But in many situations that I have come across, it is not abuse that is going on. It is one of two things:
Fights or coldness
There are either ongoing arguments, heated debates, discussions and fights. Or there is silence, indifference, coldness – nothingness. Both of these situations are very painful. In the former, it is simply exhausting. It is tiring to be continuously fighting, who has the energy for that? In the latter, it hurts, you feel empty, ignored and unimportant. Who wants that? Nobody. So it is no surprise at all that people in either of these two situations consider going separate ways, mourn the loss, get divorced and move on.
Is there another way?
That is the million dollar question. Here is a surprising reality. Many couples that I have seen in this kind of distress, if asked individually ‘would you like to make it work still?’, they would say ‘yes’. The problem is that they don’t believe they can make it work. They believe they’ve exhausted all options and it just doesn’t work. I give these folks a lot of credit for having tried their best and it is ultimately not for me to decide whether they should stay together or not but if they would like to feel that they’ve done whatever they can in order to save it, then I have some recommendations.
The four horsemen
If you’ve looked into writings about marriage, then you have no doubt come across the writings of Dr. John Gottman. He is very famous for his research on marriage and its challenges. He is also famous for having named the 4 worst characteristics in a relationship which he names the ‘4 horsemen’. These are:
- Stonewalling (one partner withdraws from the interaction – often because they feel flooded). This is often the man who believes that this is an attempt in order not to make things worse
- Contempt (the worst of the 4 – being mean and disrespectful, the highest predictor of divorce)
- Defensiveness (self-protection)
All these 4 are high predictors of divorce. But Dr Gottman suggests 4 antidotes to these 4 horsemen. See Dr Gottman discuss these predictors of divorce:
Which therapy does Dr Gottman recommend?
Well, if you are in luck and live near a therapist that practices ‘Collaborative therapy’ developed by Dan Wile, you should certainly look into that. Dr Gottman has called Dan Wile the greatest living therapist. So you may wish to contact Dan Wile or have a look on his website whether he can help you find an appropriate referral – www.danwile.com
What are my options?
There is another program which comes highly recommended, and you can use yourself even if your spouse isn’t interested in working along with you!
Get help from Mort Fertel – author of marriage fitness
If you are willing to work hard at your marriage and give it a ‘final’ – give it all you got. Mort Fertel has saved thousands of marriages that were on the brink of divorce. Not only has he succeeded at making them stay together but for those that stuck with his program – they can’t believe that at one point they were willing to give it up, see his online program here.
Something I really liked from Mort….
“Very often in my private coaching sessions, someone will say to me, “I love my spouse, but I’m not IN LOVE with my spouse.”
My immediate response is to ask, “Can you list for me 5 ways in the last week that you’ve DEMONSTRATED your love for your spouse?”
In other words, he claims that love is a verb and doing certain actions, will work to restore love in the relationship just like other rules of life such as ‘gravity’, there are rules of nature and rules of relationships. This is what he teaches in his free report that you can sign up for or sign up for sessions with Mort. Following his rules has saved thousands of marriages.
If you prefer reading a book, here is the Amazon link for his book which you can get by clicking on the image below:
In his book, he will show you that there is a ‘recipe’ to make love work on not just rely on ‘luck’ to have fallen in love. What I really like about Mort is his step-by-step style of writing which makes it very easy to grasp the concepts. It isn’t always simple to implement the ideas, that is for sure – but they are doable and especially as you see the results that you ultimately yearn for, to return to a time when you were both in love with each other – his book and his program are certainly worth it. Because, what would you pay for if you knew the chance of success is very high?
Feel free to comment or email me with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org or by clicking on the ‘contact’ link on the menu.
To your health,