In a web story that has gone viral, it was allegedly reported that a Chinese man sued his wife for "false pretenses" after she gave birth to children that he believed were "ugly" and not possibly his children. According to the story, this man was dismayed to find out that his beautiful wife had undergone extensive plastic surgery and that the children were in fact his children. Apparently, the husband successfully won this lawsuit and the story went viral.
Many sources claim this is an urban legend and not a true story. Let's hope so! But true story or not, the moral of the story is that when you marry, choose wisely.
In that same vein, determining whether to move forward with a divorce is also a decision that needs to be made wisely as well and should be made based on legitimate reasoning, unlike the alleged reasons mentioned above.
Divorce is a long, emotional process and the decision to divorce shouldn't be taken lightly or made impulsively. It is important to note that there is always time to change your mind, even if the divorce train is well on its way. As a family law attorney, many people ask me if clients ever get back together after making the decision to divorce. My answer is yes! I have seen couples hit some bumps in their marriage, file for divorce but then decide to reconcile and work things out. I have even witnessed couples who are involved in heated, nasty divorce battles reconcile and move forward together as a family. It's never too late!
While I am not a relationship expert, I have met with many clients over the years, who ask me whether they should divorce or should try and work things out with their spouse. When I am met with this question, I encourage clients to consider working on the relationship before making a final decision to divorce, especially if the following applies:
1. You waiver about divorce: Sometimes when I meet with potential clients and clients, I ask them to reconsider divorce because they waiver back and forth over whether they should or shouldn't divorce. If you waiver over whether to divorce or not, it's better to err on the side of caution and try working on the relationship before opting for divorce. When you waiver, it tells me that you haven't thought through the whole divorce process and there's still an attachment to the idea of remaining in the relationship.
2. You haven't thought through the entire process: If you waiver about divorce, it tells me that you haven't thought through the entire process and the effects on you and your family. If you haven't thought through the entire process of divorce, you're not ready for a divorce. Thinking through the entire process includes reading articles and books that outline what you can expect in a divorce. Talking to friends about their experiences in a divorce can also help you through the process. Making an appointment with experts like your financial planner may also be a good idea so you know what your financial picture will look like in a divorce. What about your children and how it will affect them? Would you move and if so, what schools would your children be enrolled in if you and your spouse divorce? Will your spouse agree with your decision to move because if he/she doesn't agree, it could turn into a very litigious and expensive dissolution. And most importantly, do you still love your spouse? Imagine a life without this person and go from there.
3. You and your spouse are willing to try counseling: It is important that before you make a final decision to divorce, that you and your spouse have exhausted all avenues of repairing your relationship. One option to assist and heal your relationship is through counseling, whether it be individual therapy or couples therapy. When clients tell me that they are willing to try counseling and their spouse is also open to the idea, then I always suggest that they should try this avenue before filing for divorce and then send them on their way. I'm happy to report that in some circumstances, these couples try therapy and decide to stay in the marriage and make it work. It's important to remember though, that therapy is not a quick fix for your relationship, but it requires time. So you and, your spouse need to be willing to put in the time and effort in therapy to try and make the relationship work.
The decision to divorce should not be taken lightly since it will be a life-altering event. Consider some of the key points outlined above and make sure you make an informed, rational decision before taking this course of action.