You are done. You know it. You have tried everything and you are still miserable. Your marriage is over and you want out.
The problem is, your husband is clueless. He still loves you. He thinks that you can still save your marriage.
You know he is wrong, but what do you do?
The ebb and flow of relationships:
Believe it or not, your situation is not unique. It is rare that two people both decide to end a relationship at the same time. One is almost always farther ahead in their decision-making process than the other. That is why so many people feel blind-sided by divorce. Even though the signs that their marriage is in trouble might have been flashing like the emergency lights on an ambulance, one person didn’t see them.
If you are the person who has decided to call it quits, the best thing you can do for your spouse – and for yourself – is to give your husband the time he needs to get on board with your decision and to adjust to what will soon be a new reality. Not only is that the most loving and respectful thing you can do for your husband (whom you loved once upon a time), but it will also make your divorce proceed much more smoothly once you actually begin the process.
Here are five ways that you can respect your husband, and yourself, when you decide that you want a divorce, but you know that your husband does not.
WATCH for more advice on coping with divorce. Post continues after video…
1. If you can, give your husband a heads up before your decision is final.
This won’t be right for everyone, but, if you are thinking about divorce, especially if you are in a long term marriage (10+ years), you owe it to yourself, your spouse, and your relationship, to let your husband know that your marriage is falling apart before you pull the plug.
Yes, even after you have “the discussion,” your husband still may not get it. He may not think you would ever leave. But, if he does understand that you are seriously unhappy, that just might be the jolt he needs to start working on your marriage before it’s too late. Sure, whatever he does might not work, but what if it does?
2. Be clear and consistent.
If you have decided that you want a divorce, and you know that nothing is going to change your mind, then tell your spouse that! Will it hurt? Absolutely! But dealing with that hurt will be a thousand times easier for your husband than nursing the hope that marriage counselling, or a romantic holiday, or just “talking through” your problems, will put your marriage back on track.
You may think that presenting your decision as anything less than final is simply “softening the blow.” It’s not. It’s pulling off the band-aid inch by inch from an open burn wound. All you are doing is making the pain worse.