How to Stop a Divorce After Your Spouse Has Filed an Application
YOU FEEL LIKE SHE gave up too quickly and believe that your marriage can be saved.
You badly want to give it another shot. But you feel utterly defeated. She has made it clear that she is done. So, what can you do?
Can you save your marriage from the brink of divorce?
The answer to this question is an unconditional yes. You can halt the divorce proceedings and save your marriage at any stage.
Indeed, experts indicate that you can use divorce to save your marriage. Filing for a divorce can often be the catalyst that sparks renewed interest in reconciling the differences that have driven your wife to contemplate separation and possibly divorce.
According to marriage therapist Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby, a divorce can lead couples into a transformational crisis where they make positive, and often long overdue changes to their relationship.
According to Illinois Matrimonial and Family Law, 5% of the spouses who file for divorce try reconciliation and half of those who do succeed and stay married.
How to save your marriage from divorce
The filing for divorce does not necessarily nail the marital coffin shut. However, how you handle yourself in the days and weeks after your partner has asked for a divorce can make all the difference as to how things unfold. You can stop a divorce from happening if you can stay in control of yourself and rise above the immediate emotions of the situation.
Did you know: Many times, filling for a divorce is more of a cry for help rather than a severe premeditated intention by a spouse?
Accept your spouse’s feelings
The first time your partner tells you they have filed for a divorce, your natural reaction is to get angry, hurt, and defensive and call out their irrationality.
However, if you want to save this marriage, you need to step out of yourself for a minute and put all your energy into seeking to understand your spouse’s point of view as objectively as you can.
You need to accept that your partner is unhappy and she wants out. You are both entitled to your feelings, and it is crucial to accept their position and not try to change it.
Validate her feelings
While it may be the hardest thing to do, you must give your partner the opportunity to share with you how she feels and what she considers the challenges in your relationship.
Understand that your spouse is hurting, even though she is being angry. According to Dr. Lisa Marie Bobby, whenever people are angry, they are hurt or scared.
The more empathy you can have for your wife, the more you are able to understand she is in a place of pain and fear.
Validate their feelings by letting them know that you are taking them seriously and you are willing to work with them. Many times, people go through with divorce when they stop believing that change is possible. Take responsibility for your role in the problems in the marriage and commit to making the necessary changes.
How did you contribute to the situation?
At the core of stopping a divorce is a compromise. Refusing to is the cause of many divorces. You can stop a divorce with three little words. No, not, ‘I love you!’ The three important words for this scenario are ‘I will compromise.’
To adopt this mindset, you must be willing to change yourself. More than you want to change your partner. Even though you may feel that they have their shortcomings, the only behavior you can really affect is yours.
Demonstrating your commitment to the relationship by willingly making the changes needed about yourself will reinforce what your priorities are to her. It will also show her the importance that you place on your spouse and your relationship.
Stop the chase
Your natural inclination, when confronted by an impending divorce, is to beg, plead, declare your love and relentlessly pursue your wife. This is precisely what you do not want to do in this case. The chances are that anything you say at this point means absolutely nothing to them. Your pursuit will only make your wife want to leave even more.
Get to work on yourself
When you are desperate, you might find yourself crying a lot, moping around, and losing interest in things.
However, the result of your desperation is not exactly attractive. Remember, you are competing with your spouse’s fantasy of an ideal life without any of the marital problems that you have been having.
Therefore, you better pick yourself up and pull yourself together. You must act as if you are moving on with your life; otherwise, you have no fighting chance.
How do you become cheerful again, you ask? By remembering who you really are! Stop acting as if you are a victim and focus on making yourself a better person.
Did you stop going to church? Go back. Have you been wanting to take a new class? Go for it. Do you have some old friends you have not contacted for a while? Pick up the phone. Is there a favorite family member you haven’t seen for a while? Visit them.
The point is, do something that will put you back in touch with yourself. Focus on being the best that you can be and in doing so, your partner will eventually notice.
Some things will happen by now:
Your spouse will become curious
Your spouse has noticed all the changes in you. She will start showing more interest in your whereabouts and might even suggest you spend some time together. If this happens:
- Accept some invitations, but not all
- Do not talk about your future together
The rule is to respond to your spouse’s renewed interest but doesn’t be too responsive
Your spouse might have a change of heart
Over time, some of the pressure will be removed, and you will both find that you can smile together again. At this point, you can both assess whether you are interested in working things out. However, do not move too quickly. It is really crucial that you pace yourselves.
Make new ground rules
You did not get to this place of disharmony overnight. Therefore, you have to get back to the marriage cautiously. Do not abandon all your interests and do not spend every waking minute at each other’s side.
When you decide for sure that you are giving your marriage another chance, outline the things that you will do differently.
Whether it is communicating better or solving conflicts before they escalate. The previous problems must be addressed in a way that both of you feel satisfied before you can jump back in.
The threat of a divorce does not have to be the end of your marriage. Many people do stop divorces, and sometimes even after the court orders have been handed down.
It is much easier to repair your marriage and make it right than to deal with the aftermath of a divorce. Divorce pain does not end for a very long time. So, you owe it to yourself to do everything in your power to stop that divorce.
You may succeed or you may not because it takes two partners to save a marriage.
But, you know what: at the end of the day, what you really want to say to yourself is, ‘I did try as hard as I could,' and you will always be proud of how you behaved yourself.
There is help if you're looking to save your marriage.