So your not happy? Marriage isn’t what you thought is was going to be! Your spouse isn’t who you thought they were! You didn’t think you would be around this long! You are the one who changed! Has depression set in…mental health become an issue? Your finances are crippling you! child rearing has taken its toll and you don’t know what to do! Permanent illness or injury has become unbearable! There is not more affection in the marriage! You or your spouse has been unfaithful! Religious or cultural differences have reared themselves in a difficult manner! I just got hit by my spouse!
Wow, there are many ways that marriage can be tough. did anyone ever say that marriage was going to be easy? How about kids, did anyone ever say that children would be easy? Are there any options to consider before divorce? There are many actually and if you are serious about saving your marriage you should be able to come up with quite a few. If you really want to sit there and say that there are no options then perhaps you should consider a self examination approach. So lets begin with that.
If you haven’t done so already, you need to look in the mirror if you are interested in building options to consider before divorce. Ask yourself, “have I been the best spouse that I could be?” Have I lived up to the person my suppose thought that I was? Have I done the things to make my spouse happy? Have I lived up to the bargain? Do I help? Am I affectionate? These are all very real questions.
One can always bring up the fact that someone else is to blame but wouldn’t it be wonderful to be able to take credit for happiness? Can you honestly say that you are the one responsible for love and affection and compassion even when things get rough or difficult? Yes, he is the one who said this or she is the one that did that. How do you think your spouse will feel about you if you are the one that made it right or that brought love back. How will you feel if you are able to feel love, to feel what it is like to be loved?
The bottom line, you may be part of the problem so try and be part of the solution!
Another area to improve upon when you are thinking about options to consider before divorce is communication. Can you imagine dating without ever speaking to the prospective significant other? The hardest part of dating in my opinion is not proposing or trying to have sex, it is the art of “the move.” For some it is crippling. For some it is impossible and they remain single. Approaching someone you want to take a chance with is hard. I think it is fair to say that communication is essential to gaining a significant other. It is so important that people usually remember the first time they met and the details of every part of the event.
So why would we expect that communication is ok to stop. If you truly are invested in making a relationship last you must communicate. Tell the other person what you like, and ask the other what their preferences are. Again, if you are invested or wish to be invested or if you want to be part of the solution rather than the person who is the reason why it couldn’t work than you must communicate. Once you get in the practice of examining your self and truly understanding your short falls, your needs and your desires, you must convey these things to the other, you must ask the same things from the other and you must try and help.
This is not a road to be traveled alone. One of the options to consider before divorce is counseling. Though there are many things inline that you can do by yourself and at times should do by yourself, having a fruitful and fulfilling relationship and marriage is not one of them. Many times professional help is either required or just better. You can rack your brain and make every effort possible and you may ultimately be faced with a spouse who, though feels the same way as you (wishing to make it work) but who doesn’t know what to do.
Once again, remember that first date. How much nerve did it take for him to approach you? How much nerve did it take for you to approach yours? Can you believe that it might take the same amount of nerve or more to break the silence now? When communication is difficult or you are having trouble examining yourself, or if you don’t believe your spouse has stared the process of self examination or is having trouble either reciprocating, a third person is helpful and sometime necessary.
Traditionally one of the options to consider before divorce has been a marriage retreat. Many churches or religious organizations provide either weekend type experiences or evening events meant to bring couples closer together and to help and facilitate peoples ability to work through their daily problems and to inspire new interest and sometimes reinvigorate passion into the relationship and marriage.
Today there are secular versions of the same. Many times these secular experiences are put on by marriage and family counselors. Ask you religious leader or your counselor for information and most likely you will find an opportunity that is awaiting you!
Oh yes the kids! What has little susie done now or little Johnny. Are their options to consider before divorce when it comes to children. Yes. By now you should be thinking yes to any question regarding can we make it work. How great! A parenting class. Who would have thought.
But are their classes for people who are trying to make it work or are there only classes for those going through the legal process of divorce who are required by law to take a parenting class. The answer is thee are classes to help people parent who are interested in marriage.
And guess what, you don’t need to have parenting problems to be able to benefit from a parenting class. Don’t let your children be the reason why you are divorced. And don’t let your children needs fall through the cracks because you are divorcing. Children have problems sometimes. Children have behavioral needs as well. Once again, be part of the solution and not the problem.
Not everyone has religion in their lives and it is ok if you don’t. There are many secular types of help and resources out there. If you do have religion you most likely have another source of help. One of the options to consider before divorce is going to your church or synagogue or mosque or whatever place of worship you have.
Many times the overwhelming direction from your clergy is that there is a way to make it better. If you both belong to the same faith this may be helpful as you will have this in common. Though clergy can be very helpful there are times when organized religion can make things difficult. Be sure to confide in clergy who understand the importance of having a voice and understands the concepts of equality and fairness. Time and time again, we hear and learn of ways that clergy have helped people and changed the world in a better and more peaceful way. If it doesn’t feel right however yo may wish to explore a different clergy member or a different place of worship.
When couples belong to different faiths, this sometimes becomes a challenge. go out of your way to seek out a clergy member who has experience and is interested in interfaith relationships. The interfaith experience can be very enriching and very fulfilling for everyone but you and yours must be open.