How to tell your spouse you want a divorce
If you feel that it may be time to tell your spouse that you want a divorce, you’ll want to make sure that you go about this in the right way. The correct way to tell your spouse that you’ve decided on a divorce depends on your reasons for wanting the separation, as well as your desire to keep the process as decent and painless as possible. Here are some suggestions that may help:
Express your concern for your spouse
If you’ve decided that you want to divorce your spouse because he or she is struggling with a serious illness, such as a drug or alcohol addiction, you’ll want to make sure that you’re expressing sincere concern for your spouse’s health, even while you’re informing them that you want a divorce. Many times, the spouse being left will attempt to make promises to change, but once you’ve made your decision, it’s important that you stand your ground. Health problems such as these take lots of time and effort to fix, and while your spouse may have every intention of changing, a verbal promise is simply not enough to save the marriage. Make sure that your spouse knows that above all, you want him or her to be healthy and happy, and that you want the same thing for yourself; your spouse should know that preserving your own happiness is the reason you’re asking for the divorce, and that you’re not trying to hurt them.
Tell your spouse in a public place
The news about your desire for a divorce may go over better if you tell your spouse in a public place, but in a private area. For instance, go out to dinner with your spouse, and tell him or her that you want a divorce while the two of you are at the table together, or go to the park or a beach to break the news. This way, you’ll be able to have a private conversation, but your spouse will be more inclined to behave in a reserved and rational manner if there are people around. You’ll also be able to discuss the divorce a little more calmly, since you’ll both be aware of the fact that you’re in public.
You may want to choose a place that does not have sentimental value to the two of you, such as a restaurant that the two of you ate at often, or a park you always used to visit; this way, the news of your request for a divorce won’t be coupled with fond memories that the two of you will no longer be able to share.
Prepare to take the blame
No matter where or how you tell your spouse you want a divorce, you should expect to be attacked and accused of ruining your spouse’s life. Be prepared to look like the ‘bad guy’ in the situation, since your spouse will be hurt, and possibly shocked, by the news. Reassure your spouse that you understand how they must be feeling, but that you think the divorce would be the best thing to do at this point. If possible, let your spouse know that you are not opposed to remaining friends, and want the marriage to end as amicably as possible. You should also set up a time, with your spouse, to tell your children that you are divorcing. Make sure that you tell your children together, and make sure that you know how your spouse will explain the reason for the divorce to your children. Even if you can’t agree on the reasons why the divorce is taking place, you should both be able to give your children the same explanation.