If you’re married and are thinking about getting a divorce, it can be difficult to find the right time and words for a discussion. In fact, you may feel like there is no good time or right words! Breaking the news can feel daunting, especially if your husband has no idea that you’re considering a divorce. So how do you tell your husband you want a divorce in the kindest way possible? Let’s take a look.

Ready for a Divorce? 

If you’re considering a divorce, it’s crucial to first ask yourself whether or not you think there’s any chance of salvaging the marriage. If you’ve been in an unhappy marriage for years and have tried various methods to work on the relationship with no success, then a divorce may be the best solution. 

On the other hand, if you’re relatively unhappy but still see some potential in the relationship, seeing a family therapist or investing in another form of marital therapy may be a better option. Divorce can be expensive and emotionally exhausting, especially if you have children.

If something has happened in your marriage, such as infidelity, you need to talk about the strong emotions you may feel. Talking about feelings with a trusted friend or counselor can help you move forward and make the best decisions about your future.

It Takes Two to Make a Marriage Work

Many times couples split up and get back together because of temporary issues. Consider these scenarios that could end in a happy relationship with a bit of time and counseling:

  • Perhaps you’ve been sending each other mixed signals. You may be busy running around after kids or chatting with friends on your cell phone. “Husband time” has fallen by the wayside. Spend time together and do something new and exciting to build your rapport back!
  • Maybe he just lost his job and is not himself for a time. And his sad and passive-aggressive philosophy of life grates on your nerves. Sometimes, being patient with your partner and letting life run its course for a time is the best answer when a spouse needs time to get it together.
  • Or maybe you need to spend less time with another family member. Sometimes it’s easy for one spouse to get pulled away by a parent, sibling, or child and forget to engage with a spouse.
  • It’s also easy to find the “bad” parts of our spouse and concentrate on what they are doing wrong. Instead, try to find what is right about your spouse. Write down what you find and let your spouse know what you like about them. Find the gold in all that coal dust! With a bit of digging, you may find that the spouse you want is right in front of you!

Discuss Divorce to Know If You’re Both on the Same Page

You may want to bring up divorce as an idea by talking about friends who are going through separation and divorce. Talking through another couple’s journey may help you see how to tell your husband you want a divorce.

Don’t Make Threats

Before having a divorce discussion, ask yourself if you’ve decided to go through with a divorce. If you’re considering threatening divorce to gain power or to get the upper hand in your relationship, you can make the situation worse and permanently hurt the future of your marriage.

Don’t Put Up with Threats

Before having a divorce discussion, consider whether you ever feel unsafe around your spouse. If you do, let trusted friends and family members know what you’re planning. If possible, meet with a family law attorney and family therapist before talking with your spouse about separation or divorce when abuse is a factor!

A family law attorney deals with all of the issues surrounding separation and divorce and can help you find safety for yourself and any children as you separate and plan divorce. Your best self-defense with an abusive spouse is getting help to get out of there!

Divorce Conversation: How to Tell Your Husband You Want a Divorce

When you’re ready to tell your husband that you want a divorce, how exactly should you go about it?

First, it’s important to schedule a time when both of you can sit down in a private place and have uninterrupted time to talk. You don’t want to be wrangling kids into pajamas and trying to clean up the kitchen while you casually mention that you want a divorce.

Second, consider the language you use. It can be hard to imagine what will happen when you tell your spouse you want a divorce, but using non-blaming neutral language is key to this discussion.

To divorce nicely, you’ll need to exemplify what that means to your spouse. Especially if your spouse has no idea how unhappy you are, you need to stay calm when delivering this difficult news.

It’s okay to be direct about the bad news, but watch your spouse’s reaction so that you can decide how to continue the conversation. If your spouse seems shocked or disoriented, give him time to respond. This is a difficult conversation, and your spouse may feel like it’s coming out of left field. He may need time to decide how to react.

It’s okay to take time to talk and help your spouse process the news. However, if you hear the same reasons over and again about why you’re wrong and how you caused the problems, let your spouse know that you’re not interested in playing the blame game.

However, be careful about giving false hope, just to help him cope. If you’ve made up your mind, it’s better to let your spouse know that you plan to move on. Dealing with truth when you discuss divorce just makes sense for both spouses.

Before Filing for Divorce: One-Year Separation Period In North Carolina

In North Carolina, you will need to live separately and apart for one year before filing for divorce. Some couples find that a trial separation brings them back together. However, this is not always the case.

During a separation, you or your spouse will move out of the family home. This year will likely hold many conversations about the whys, hows, whens, and whats of your relationship ending. Discussing the terms of your divorce will help you both work through what is at stake and what you need to sign the final divorce decree.

During your separation period, you’ll also need to work through a post-divorce budget for yourself and any children. You’ll work with your attorney to determine the fairest child support and living arrangements for both you, your spouse, and any children.

If you and your spouse can work through financial information together and come to agreements about your marital home, your kids, and any alimony or spousal support, you may be eligible for an uncontested divorce.

With an uncontested divorce, you and your spouse decide what your lives will look like and work out an agreement together. If you work out your settlement options together, your divorce can be easier, and the judge will generally agree with the terms you decide work for you both.

Maintaining Healthy Family Relationships

When you tell your husband that you want a divorce, if you have children together, it is crucial to remember that even after you are divorced, you are still family. Your children are going to go through a difficult transition, and it is important to be there for them. You may want to consider family therapy during this time. It can be helpful for all members of the family to have someone to talk to who can help them move forward.

Divorce can be a difficult decision, but it may be the best thing for all members of the family. Ensure you have a plan in place for how you will continue to communicate and see your children. And try not to place blame on yourself or your ex-spouse.

As a divorced person, what will matter in future years is knowing that you’re caring for yourself and those you love.

We Can Help

At Plekan Law, our family law and divorce attorneys can help you work through the steps of separation and divorce in North Carolina. We understand how crucial kindness can be in our relationships and how working well with your spouse can make a difference to any children in your family.

Contact our office today for a consultation and find out how we can help you move forward.