All married couples have arguments from time to time, but everything changes if one spouse begins to threaten divorce in the course of a fight. If circumstances between you and your spouse become so poor that divorce enters the conversation, you may not know exactly what you should do.
Here are some things you should consider if your spouse threatens to divorce you.
Does Your Spouse Have Something to Gain by Threatening Divorce?
When your spouse threatens divorce, you may not fully understand what is meant behind the threat. A spouse might threaten divorce for a myriad of reasons. Perhaps he or she just wants to get your attention. If you have had regular arguments, the threat can be to snap you both back into reality and face the crux of your issues.
Your spouse could also threaten divorce to gain leverage over you. The threat is scary, and your spouse could use the threat as a method to get what he or she wants from you.
Threats can also come from fear. If your spouse is worried you will end your marriage first, he or she could threaten divorce before you to confirm his or her fears. If you go along with the divorce, your spouse will know his or her fears were valid.
Should You Seriously Consider the Threats?
No matter what is behind the threat of divorce, you need to take it seriously. When divorce enters the conversation at any point in a marriage, you cannot ignore the fact something is seriously wrong. You have to face the likelihood your marriage is at risk.
How Should You Respond to Divorce Threats?
If your spouse threatens you with divorce, take some time to think about how you will respond. You will want to say something right away, but you need to hold your emotions back to avoid expressing something you might later regret.
Once you have had time to think about why your spouse threatened divorce, consider how you will respond. You can respond in many different ways. One way to respond is to simply talk to your spouse about why he or she would mention divorce.
Have an open discussion where you can both express your feelings about what may be wrong in your marriage. Let your spouse know how you feel about a divorce threat.
If your spouse mentioned divorce in jest or if he or she was using as a tool to get something from you, let them know how it hurt you and potentially damaged your relationship. If you can get to the bottom of the threat, you will hopefully work past it and move on.
Another response is to get a divorce attorney. if you believe you are heading towards divorce, call an attorney for advice on what you should do to protect yourself. Your attorney will explain your rights and options available to you. If you truly feel your spouse is serious about the threat of divorce, this is a safe and appropriate response.
You could also respond by going to counseling together to repair your relationship. Ask your spouse if he or she would want to take steps to move forward with professional help of a counselor or therapist. If your spouse refuses to obtain professional help with you, it may be a sign he or she was serious about the threats.
If your spouse has threatened to divorce you and you want to know where you stand legally, contact us at the Cofield Law Firm. We are a family-owned and -operated law firm that wants to make sure you have fair representation.