For many couples who end their marriages, their divorce seemed unavoidable. Just a sad but inevitable result of circumstances entirely beyond their control. But is that an accurate depiction of what really happened? Is divorce simply something that strikes randomly? Something that so many couples can’t avoid, and don’t know how to combat?
The answer is no. Discounting abusive situations, there are many things that the average couple could do in advance to reduce their chances of divorce. Reasons for divorce nowadays are often presented as being very specific and rather commonplace. But this is often not true, and doesn’t reflect the real reasons behind why the relationship failed.
Although affairs, time-consuming careers and lack of common ground are often cited as the reasons for why marriages fail, these are rarely the real reasons for divorce. These are more often the symptoms of problems, not the problems themselves. If you were to go back in time, you would find that the trouble began much earlier in the marriage, long before the symptoms began to appear.
When one spouse has an affair, it is a deeply wounding and damaging experience for the other spouse. But is the affair really the reason for the failure of the marriage, or is it simply a symptom of something else, something below the surface, that is causing that relationship to crumble? An interesting question indeed…
There are many reasons for divorce, but are some of them avoidable?
A marriage that fails because one partner develops a drinking problem, or spends countless hours at work, or spends the entire retirement fund on QVC shopping, are divorces that might have been preventable. How, you wonder? Well, maybe if the couple had recognized the struggling relationship as something salvageable before it was too late, they could have worked to save it.
So what is the real reason for divorce? Well, while no one solution will fix everything for everyone, one of the most important factors in a relationship that survives and thrives is communication. According to a survey conducted by YourTango.com, the primary reason for divorce nowadays is a breakdown in communication.
Situations that are labeled as the cause of the divorce, like gambling, drinking, affairs, and any number of other damaging behaviors, are so often the result of communication failure. They happen because unhappy people often make poor choices, usually in an effort to make themselves feel better. They seek comfort, or distraction, or a substitute pleasure to replace what they are lacking in life.
No one person is ever going to fulfill all of another person’s needs in life. But talking about your struggles, your needs, and your problems together can help ease that burden. Discussing with your spouse what your emotional, and even physical needs, will help to ensure than more of those needs are met. No one can read another person’s mind, and if you never talk about your hopes and fears, needs and desires, your partner will never know how you feel.
Recognizing a communication breakdown when it happens, listening to your spouse when they share their thoughts or feelings, and setting aside time to talk on a regular basis will go a long way towards reducing the chances of a divorce. However, if in the end you need a family law attorney, because your marriage has ended, we are here to help you.