Making the decision to divorce is difficult; however, the divorce process does not have to be. When you and your spouse are about to end your marriage, there will be certain obstacles that you must overcome, especially if there are children involved.
You do not want to make matters worse by fighting with your spouse throughout the process. Despite what television and the general public will have you believe, there is a way for you and your spouse to have an easy and amicable divorce.
What an amicable divorce looks like
For you and your spouse to have an amicable and low-stress divorce, you must first know what one is. In the divorce process, you and your spouse will be responsible for coming to a mutual agreement about each part of the divorce agreement. This includes everything from the property obtained during the marriage to the visitation schedules for the children.
An amicable divorce does not mean that there will not be painful moments throughout the process. Instead, an amicable divorce is a divorce where both spouses are able to remain civil while coming to mutual agreements concerning each aspect of the divorce.
Some of the matters that you and your spouse will have to come to a mutual agreement about include:
While these topics can be difficult for some couples to mutually agree upon, there is a way for couples to resolve them peacefully. Here are some choices that you and your spouse can make to have an easier and more amicable divorce.
Avoid the blame game
Most of us think of the divorce process as the ultimate battle between two former spouses. In some cases, it can be. One of the reasons why divorce proceedings become so drawn out and emotionally draining is because one or both of the spouses want to play the blame game and bring out their laundry list of grievances. Do not engage in this behavior with your spouse. Instead of thinking of the past, focus on moving forward and what you want out of the divorce. Even when your spouse is engaging in the blame game, let them know they will be fighting by themselves.
Use the cooling off period
You and your spouse can also take advantage of the cooling off period. The cooling off period is the mandatory period in every divorce where both spouses have the time to think the process over. Because Texas does not recognize legal separation for married couples who are considering divorce, a cooling off period can do you and your spouse some good. Even though you and your spouse are not allowed to legally separate, you can still live apart and make temporary arrangements while you are in the process of divorcing.
In Texas, the cooling off period is 60 days. Taking advantage of the cooling off period will help you and your spouse gather your emotions and really consider what your lives will look like should you continue with the divorce. It will also allow cooler heads to prevail and give you and your spouse to talk things over if needed.
Speak to a therapist
If you are still feeling angry about the way your marriage has ended up, you should consider speaking to a therapist. Speaking to a therapist or counselor is a great way for you to express yourself without taking your feelings out on your spouse. You can express the negative emotions that might hurt your divorce process with a therapist, keeping all information confidential. You may be able to come to terms with the reality of your marriage and learn how to move forward in a healthy way.
Give your spouse the benefit of the doubt
When deciding to divorce, it is easy to view your spouse as the enemy. However, make sure to give your spouse the benefit of the doubt and do not automatically consider them the villain. By speaking with them throughout the process and sharing your expectations with them, you may realize that you both want the same thing. Even couples who cannot stand each other do not want to draw the divorce process out. But if you are not able to be peaceful with your spouse, that is exactly what can happen.
Do not date other people throughout the process
One action that you do not want to do is start dating someone else in the middle of the divorce process. Even if you and your spouse no longer love each other, bringing in another person in the midst of a divorce can stir the wrong emotions from your spouse. This can definitely make it harder for you and your spouse to be cordial with one another. Your spouse can also use your current dating situation against you, especially when it comes to matters of child visitation.
What are the benefits of an amicable divorce?
The way that you and your spouse handle the divorce process will set the tone for your divorce and relationship moving forward. Being combative with your spouse throughout the process will lead to feelings of resentment and anger for years to come. Thinking of the bigger picture and remaining peaceful with your spouse will make the divorce process and all matters of family issues easier in the long run.
If there is something in your divorce proceeding that you want to revisit, your spouse will be more open to considering it if both of you have been amicable from the beginning. Even if the two of you do have bitter feelings, you do not need to let those feelings take control of the divorce process.
At Grable Grimshaw PLLC, our San Antonio family law attorneys want to make the divorce process as easy as possible. We can help you and your spouse identify your goals for your divorce and your family, now and in the future. Call our office at 210-761-5687, or fill out our contact form to schedule a consultation.