How To Peacefully Reveal That You Want a Divorce

The coming together of two people in marriage is a beautiful thing, and that’s why it’s always devastating when it doesn’t work out. We all know the statistics for divorce rates and how chaotic the whole thing could be. We can talk endlessly about the whys and the hows, but sometimes when it’s over, it’s over and there’s nothing you can do. If you’re unhappy in your marriage and fantasizing about your ‘freedom’, then you should probably consider ending it. Despite common belief, it’s not wise to ‘wait till the kids are older’ or ‘tough it out for a few years’. Life is too short for that, and your happiness and mental and emotional well-being should come first. 

So how do you break all that to your spouse without it getting too messy? 

1. Double-Check

It goes without saying that this is a huge decision that will change your life completely. This is why before even dreading telling your spouse that you want a divorce, you need to do a little soul searching to make sure that this is truly what you want. Once you bring up the subject, there will be no take-backs. The decision should come after you’ve already tried everything you can to fix your marriage so that any persuasion from your partner to ‘try harder’ doesn’t sway you. If you’re not even invested enough to consider trying to work things out by seeing a marriage counselor, then divorce is probably the right decision. Once you’ve made the decision, don’t allow people around you to make you doubt it or guilt you into changing your mind.

2. Logistics Are Everything

The worst thing you can do with something as delicate as this is blurting it out of the blue without thinking through the logistics. First of all, you have to pick the right time to break the news. If your spouse is already going through a major event like the death of a relative or an upcoming promotion at work, you’ll have to wait it out. At the same time, don’t wait too long, dragging it out will make it worse and will make you agonize about having something this big kept from them. The setting is also very important here, you have to make sure you’re in a quiet environment, away from any possible disruptions, and most importantly away from your children if you have any. Public places are the worst place to do this, even if you think it might prevent a scene from happening, don’t count on it.

3. Come Prepared


Before you break the news to your spouse, you’ll have to make sure you step in this conversation fully prepared. A highly recommended step is to speak to your marriage counselor or a therapist about your own feelings about the situation and how to deal with them instead of letting them loose on your partner when you have the talk. A specialist will also help you choose the right words to say and work through the best way to handle whichever reaction your spouse might have. Another important part of preparation is consulting with a divorce attorney about the basics of the process of ending your marriage. This step will help you in answering any questions your spouse might have about what the future holds, whether it’s regarding the children, property, or finances. 

4. Keep It Classy

This tip is essential to keep in mind while you’re about to tell your spouse about your decision to end your marriage. There is no need to turn the whole thing to a scene out of Mr. and Mrs. Smith. Go in calm, confident, empathetic, and most importantly respectful. Especially if they have an angry, defensive reaction. Try to contain their state by remaining relaxed, patient and remind yourself how difficult this is for them as it was for you to decide. Validate their feelings, but also acknowledge how unhappy both of you have been in the marriage. Give them time to process and suggest approaching this situation as a team for the sake of the good times you’ve had, your children, and both your families who would also be affected. 

This whole experience can be very hard and consuming, whether it’s making the decision of getting a divorce or expressing it to your partner. That’s why it’s essential that you have a strong support system during all of it. Someone to weigh in on the decision itself as an outside party, someone to tell everything to without judgment, and someone who helps you get back on your feet afterwards.