20 years from now, you don’t want to be saying, “I messed up” or “I wish I did that”. Choose wisely…
When you’re in an unhappy marriage and wondering, “Should I get a divorce?”, weighing your feelings about your spouse and your relationship can feel overwhelming. But knowing which questions to ask yourself about the many complicated aspects of relationships can make deciding whether or not to end your marriage feel at least somewhat less daunting.
I know, because I’ve been there, too.
One night, I steadily changed into my pyjamas. Brushed and flossed my teeth, grabbed the remote, turned off the television, and lay in bed. My spouse coldly walked into the room, turned off the lights, and lay down next to me. The room was silent as a tomb.
I tossed and I turned as I struggled to fall asleep. My eyes veered off as I stared out through the side window in my room and wondered: “Is this what the rest of my life is going to be like?”
I felt nothing. This person who had once meant the world to me has turned into someone I could hardly stand.
My brain scrambled and wondered if this or that would change… if our relationship would get better. Was I delusional or were we just going through a rough patch?
I had hoped it would get better for so long, but it just felt like it was no use anymore. I had thought about divorce before, but I just wasn’t sure if my marriage was really over. We tried counselling. We tried talking to each other. We tried… everything.
I curled up, closed my eyes and hoped that tomorrow will be a better day.
Does this sound like your situation, as well?
Thinking about getting a divorce can be a scary time for anyone. There are so many external factors you might take into account when deciding to go through a divorce.
If you’ve also been asking yourself, “Should I get a divorce?” here are three deep questions to ask yourself before contacting an attorney:
You should not be looking for an excuse to be happy
1. Are you looking for a way out?
If you’re hoping that your spouse would just cheat on you so you can end the relationship, you should really re-evaluate why you are still in the relationship in the first place.
You should not be looking for an excuse to be happy. If you were unhappy in your relationship, it’s clear that your partner has changed and you are looking for a way out.
Get a divorce. Period.
You should not have to find an excuse to end your marriage. If you are scouring to find any excuse to get a divorce, it is a clear sign that you should get a divorce.
2. Have you stopped feeling angry?
When you are no longer angry at your significant other, you are no longer emotionally invested. Therefore, you no longer agonise over the end of the marriage. That’s a sign that you should divorce.
For example, your parents yelled at you when you were a child because they probably cared about you and your wellbeing. When your parents yelled, “Don’t touch the hot stove!” or said, “Look both ways before you cross the street!” at you, it was because they loved you and cared for your safety.
When you no longer feel resentment or no longer care about what your partner does anymore, you should divorce. If you are just so over the relationship that you do not care about anything your partner does, it’s time to end it.
READ MORE: 7 Ways to fix a broken marriage
3. Are you just incompatible?
New York Times best-selling author Mark Manson defines compatibility as “a natural alignment of lifestyle choices and values between two people”.
If you value a person who is smart and intellectual, being in a relationship with someone who did not finish high school and values nice bodies and material things is incompatible with you.
Compatibility and incompatibility are simple facts of life. People with common values and lifestyle choices will be more compatible whereas people who are not aligned in values or lifestyle choices will be incompatible. Why try to force a relationship when you could find someone more compatible?
Should you take a risk and get a divorce, or not risk it and stay in your unhappy relationship?
According to the Prospect theory of psychology, losses hurt us more than gains, which is why you may be scared of letting go.
However, time is of the essence. Soon, before you know it, a decade will pass by – a decade that you will not be able to get back.
It seems frightening because you will be jumping into the unknown, and you might be thinking: “What if I meet someone else and the same thing happens?”
Sure, you might meet someone else and it can happen all over again. But what if you meet someone, and they absolutely blow you away?
What if you meet your real soulmate?
At the end of the day, only you are responsible for getting your needs met.
20 years from now, you don’t want to be saying, “I messed up” or “I wish I did that”. Choose wisely.
Brian Beltz is the head writer at Divorce Help 360. He writes guides, offers advice, and explores trends and pitfalls for those affected by or interested in divorce.
This article was republished with permission from YourTango.