15 Warning Signs You Need A Divorce For Sure

Couple issues

When growing up, we’re told the marriage lasts forever. You meet someone special, you get married and you’ve found your own happily ever after. When you married your significant other, you vowed to be together forever. And then, the alarm bells ring, and the signs you are ready for divorce are written all over your marriage.

Little did you know then that living with your spouse would get difficult in just a couple of months or a couple of years. But it has, and you’re staring at the stark reality that you regret your marriage. Ending a marriage and accepting that it’s time for a divorce is never easy.

Perhaps, you’re staying on in an unhappy marriage, hoping that things will improve or maybe you’re still over the fence about whether your problems are big enough to warrant walking out. To make this immensely difficult decision easier, we bring some clear signs you need a divorce, in consultation with psychotherapist Jui Pimple (MA in Psychology), a trained Rational Emotive Behavior therapist and A Bach Remedy practitioner who specializes in online counseling. with

15 Signs That You Need To Get A Divorce For Sure

As per a study, the U.S. divorce rate fell from 9.7 new divorces per 1,000 women age 15 and over in 2009 to 7.6 in 2019. But, before you see that as a reason to stick around in a bad marriage, the marriage rate decline also hit an all-time low last year, with just 33 of every 1,000 unmarried adults tying the knot as opposed to 35 in 2010 and 86 in 1970.

Remember, every marriage is unique and shows its cracks in different ways. Without a conscious effort to divorce-proof your marriage, chances are that these signs will show themselves sooner. The signs are always there but people keep trying to think that everything will work out in the end. It’s tough to accept that your marriage is cracking and so many people are in denial that they are steering a sinking ship and they need to jump out of the marriage at the first opportunity.

That’s why so many people continue to stay on unhappy, unfulfilling, loveless marriages, some of which are riddled with serious issues like physical and mental abuse, marital rape and infidelity. Sometimes, even if your marriage seems perfect from the outside, there could be clear signs you should get divorced. It’s time to take a long, hard look at the state of your marital union and assess whether you can stick together for the long haul. While you introspect, keep an eye out for these 15 screaming signs you need a divorce:

Related Reading: 10 Important Components Of Trust In A Relationship

1. You cannot trust each other

The foundation of any relationship is mutual trust and understanding. A happy marriage is more than just physical satisfaction. It means coming home to a person you can be vulnerable in front of. If that isn’t the case in your marriage, it is one of the first signs divorce is inevitable.

For Pamela, her marriage to Tony meant she could come to him when she faced problems at work or in her social circle. Tony was her first person to go to for venting or for advice. However, over the years, their equation began to change. Five years into their marriage, Pamela found herself turning to colleagues or friends to share all her problems.

This, according to Jui, is one of the first signs of a failing marriage. “Trust is paramount for the success of any relationship. When something important takes place and you turn to a friend instead of your partner, it indicates the beginning of the end of a marriage,” she says.

Trust issues can develop because of several reasons. It could be cheating, misunderstanding, lying, etc. When you find yourself absolutely unable to create a space for trust and understanding with your spouse, it could be one of the signs that you should get a divorce.

2. The communication gap is massive

Clichéd as it may sound, communication is key to a successful relationship. Bad communication affects a marriage deeply and could be one of the signs of an emotional divorce. A lot of times, you observe a pattern in your spouse, which leads to baseless assumptions. This practice of mind-reading is a major culprit in the communication gap, which then creates a domino effect of arguments, blame games and more misunderstandings.

Alternatively, no matter how hard you try to communicate your feelings with your partner, you cannot find the kind of response you need. If you or your spouse are never open to a difficult conversation and the communication gap seems to know no bounds, take it as an indication that it’s time for a divorce.

“Communication is the backbone of any healthy, functional relationship. Unless two partners can sit across from each other to voice their feelings, concerns, emotions, and feel heard and validated, a relationship cannot work. If there is a complete breakdown of communication channels and every conversation turns into a battle for one-upmanship, it becomes near-impossible to work through issues and find solutions,” says Jui.

Signs you should get divorced
The communication gap is massive

3. You avoid spending time with them

It is great to spend some time apart from your spouse. Being in a marriage does not mean being around each other 24/7. Reading a book, going shopping, spending time alone in a café, even traveling alone when married, etc. are all healthy habits to grow as an individual person. But using those habits to avoid being around your partner is one of the sure signs you are ready for divorce.

“When your partner is not your priority, there’s definitely a problem. Actively avoiding one another shows that there’s a rift in your relationship,” says Jui. A happy couple follows their respective routine and indulges in their personal recreational activities, all the while looking forward to sleeping next to their loved one talking about their day.

But do you now wait to get into bed only after your significant other is asleep? Or worse, do you make excuses not to come home for days on end? If the answer to these questions is, “yes”, maybe these are signs you should get a divorce. If you’re going above and beyond to avoid being with your partner, there is little point in staying married.

Related Reading: 6 Ways Bitterness Creeps Into Your Loving Relationship

4. Your spouse is never your priority

A girls’ day out, a boys’ night out, an office party, etc. are all independently important activities for a person. When these activities stop being just an independent event and more of an excuse to be away from your spouse, an unhealthy marriage begins, especially when you haven’t spent any time at all with your partner in a long while.

If your partner has slipped so far down your priority list that you don’t even factor them in when making plans, no matter how big or small, that’s when divorce is necessary. For Janice and Matthew, marriage was all about having their own interests and friends. But soon, they realized they were spending more time with friends and on their own, than together.

“It was almost like the signs of an emotional divorce,” Janice said. They separated a year later. Your spouse stops being your priority when you use your friends or office work as a distraction or an excuse to not go home. Avoiding alone time at any cost and not prioritizing your significant other even when they need you is an intimation for a divorce.

5. You are defensive in all your statements

A healthy relationship means sitting down from time to time, discussing each other’s behavior in a respectable manner. A feedback that is put across by saying, “I love you, but I wish you’d help me do this.” However, if you’ve been noticing that you get defensive about anything that your partner says, it’s a warning sign that all is not well in paradise.

Perhaps, owing to the growing distance or chronic conflict in your marriage, you’re unable to handle even sensible criticism, almost as if you do not wish to give them the right to say anything to you. You diminish their opinions and are ready for a retort with a sword of sharp words, closing any possible door for open communication which is a very good way to make your partner feel angry and frustrated. This could definitely be one of the signs of a failing marriage.

However, this is not to say all hope is lost. Being defensive or unable to communicate healthily don’t have to be signs divorce is inevitable as long as both partners are willing to get to the root of their issues, accept responsibility for their part in pushing the marriage to the brink, and most importantly, work toward making things better.

Related Reading: 15 Signs Your Marriage Is On The Rocks and Almost Over

6. Your heart races when you think of them

And not in a good way. When your marriage is rife with troubles, a racing heart does not mean butterflies in the stomach, feeling a happy nervousness at the thought of being with them like you did in the initial stages of a relationship. Here, your heart races out of stress and fear of facing another moment with your partner, something you would immediately avoid if you could.

Pay attention to what your body is trying to signal. Do not take the physical responses of your spouse’s presence lightly. You will find yourself popping blood pressure pills if you do not address these reactions. A negative physical reaction is a big red flag and one of the most telling signs you need a divorce.

“Toxicity in relationships can become an incessant source of stress and anxiety, especially for the person at the receiving end. If left unchecked, the anxious feelings can escalate and manifest in the form of physical symptoms like sweaty palms, racing heartbeat, insomnia, eating disorders and more,” says Jui. If that’s what you’re going through, it’s among the surefire signs you should divorce your wife or husband. No relationship is worth losing your health and well-being over.

7. The criticism is incessant

Signs you regret your marriage
Incessant criticism in marriage

Anything, and literally anything that your partner does sets you off. The actions could be as insignificant as dropping a bowl by mistake or sneezing in the middle of a movie. Throwing tantrums with generalized statements like “You always do this” or “You never do that” are all negative criticisms that can never have positive outcomes.

If you’re unable to overcome constant irritability with whatever your partner does and any move of theirs is a push to criticize, consider it as a sign that you regret your marriage and want a divorce. “Criticizing your partner all the time shows a lack of respect. No relationship can survive unless there is mutual respect between spouses,” says Jui.

On the other hand, if it is your partner that cannot put a stop to negative, demeaning criticisms no matter how hard you try, that is also an indication that you need to split up with your spouse. Unconditional love is a long-lost fantasy now.

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8. Your conversations are contemptuous

A contemptuous conversation indicates a lack of value in a relationship. You will notice a gradual shift in approach whenever you have a conversation with your husband/wife. There will be countless sighs, eye-rolling, sneering comments, name-calling, and hostility. Even your body language will alter. You will either point fingers at your partner or talk with arms and legs crossed.

Every other statement exchanged by you and your partner is overloaded with taunts and general mockery. None of you are willing to hear each other out either. Treat this as a sign that you’re heading for a divorce and start taking action before it gets worse.

9. You do not address the elephant in the room

One of the signs you should get divorced is that you argue about everything and all of your arguments are rude, condescending and contemptuous. Yet, neither of you is willing to address the actual problem. You would have a massive argument about something that your spouse did three months ago, but you cannot get yourself to actually talk about what is bothering you, even if that means you have to spend countless nights being mad at each other.

That’s just what happened with Rob and Elsa. A few years into their marriage, there was only sullen silence and huge arguments about things that didn’t matter at all. There were just too many communication problems in the relationship. During those long spells of the silent treatment, Elsa would often wonder, “Does my husband want a divorce?”

As it turned out, in the heart of their hearts, they both knew that divorce was the best recourse for them. Unable to resolve their differences, they divorced in a few months. If you have stopped caring about what your partner has to say, and you would rather sweep all the issues under the carpet, that’s when divorce is necessary.

Related Reading: 5 Kinds Of Fights You Pick With Your Partner When You’re Falling Out Of Love

10. The only game you play is the blame game

Openness and acceptance? What’s that? All you and your partner do is blame each other for ruining your respective lives. Both of you seem to think that you’ve given so much in your relationship, but the other person just doesn’t seem to appreciate it and they would much rather put in efforts to ruin the bond.

Playing blame games seems to be the only thing you feel comfortable with. If every action of your spouse starts off a blame game and neither of you is able to approach the matter in a level-headed manner, then your entire dynamic is screaming it’s time for a divorce.

11. Forgiveness has stopped being an option

Every couple argues. But most couples apologize to each other and move on. Somehow, you do not want to forgive your partner. Your marriage has transcended all possibilities of forgiveness. All that there’s left is more arguments and more issues.

For Archie and Ramona, there was constant friction, since Archie felt Ramona was spending too much time with a colleague. Ramona tried to convince him that it was nothing, but Archie would not be convinced. “Maybe it was an emotional affair,” Ramona says, but it never came to anything more. “But in Archie’s eyes, I had been unfaithful and he never forgave me. Given that he was so detached and withdrawn, I’d often wonder, “Does my husband want a divorce?” As it turned out, he did.”

“Forgiveness is an underrated but immensely important element of any robust relationship. If you cannot find it in your heart to forgive your partners for their mistakes, or worse still, if you let misconceptions take hold in your mind and hold grudges against them for mistakes they may not have actually made, it will only lead to contempt and resentment. Any marriage that has been infested with contempt and resentment is at best a hollow shell of a relationship that cannot hold its own in the face of adversities,” says Jui.

If this is the case, and forgiveness is an impossibility, do yourself a favor and find a good divorce lawyer. A relationship with no space for forgiveness and moving on is as good as a dead relationship.

Related Reading: Uncontested Divorce: Step-By-Step Procedure and Benefits

12. You stonewall each other

After one point, you will grow tired of fighting with your partner and you will shut them out. This is called stonewalling. You avoid arguments by withdrawing yourself from the relationship. This means that you stop paying any heed to what your partner is saying, almost as if you’re giving them a silent treatment.

You only give them monosyllabic responses when it is absolutely mandatory, and in the worst case, you ignore their existence even when they are sitting right next to you. This means that you are overwhelmed by the mere presence of your spouse and you feel disconnected all the time. You are exhausted, and this is a sign that you regret your marriage.

13. You’ve stopped initiating in bed

Diminishing sexual desire in a marriage or a long-term relationship is not unusual, and most couples do through an ebb and flow of sex drive, dealing with many dry spells along the way. Fatigue, the struggle to strike a work-life balance, sickness, the responsibility of the kids, social obligations, so many things can get in the way of a couple’s sex life, dimming the fire of desire.

However, if you don’t feel the chemistry with your partner without any reason for a long time, it is an indication that your marriage is dying. You are drifting apart in your relationship and you know it’s been the story for quite some time now. The situation definitely calls for a divorce if you have physical desires and you want to be intimate with someone, but you do not want that someone to be your partner.

Recognize this as one of the warning signs you should get a divorce and save yourself and your spouse the indignity of dealing with the mess of infidelity. “Physical intimacy is important in a healthy relationship. When you don’t want to be intimate with your partner but feel sexual desire, or if you’ve both lost interest in each other, it’s definitely a red flag,” says Jui.

Related Reading: Has Your Husband Checked Out Emotionally? 12 Signs Of a Failing Marriage

14. Verbal and physical abuse has become frequent

According to a study by WHO, worldwide, almost one-third (27%) of women aged 15-49 years who have been in a relationship report that they have been subjected to some form of physical and/or sexual violence by their intimate partner. Abuse can also be verbal, mental or emotional, and directed at a partner of any gender. Either way, there is no excuse for it.

There is no love valuable enough to allow abuse. Strike that, if there is abuse in a relationship, it cannot be based on love. A loveless marriage where you’re subjected to emotional, physical, sexual or verbal abuse epitomizes the signs you need a divorce. If you or your partner cannot tolerate each other’s presence without abusing each other verbally or physically at any given point, don’t delay the inevitable.

Your marriage may be beyond redemption but by walking out sooner rather than later, you can protect yourself from a lifetime of trauma and scars.

15. You’ve begun strategizing a split

Do you imagine different situations in your head where you and your spouse get into a fight and you declare a divorce? Or have you already started giving excuses to stay away from home, all the while planning a split? Perhaps, you have even met with a lawyer or two to weigh your options and see how a divorce battle might play out.

Well, the signs divorce is inevitable couldn’t get more apparent than this. If your instincts are constantly directing toward a breakup and divorce is all that runs through your mind, the writing is on the wall – it’s time for a divorce.

It can be difficult identifying the toxic traits when you want to desperately hold on to a marriage. If you are able to relate to at least 4 to 5 of these signs you need a divorce, your marriage is practically shouting for a divorce. Understand it and act accordingly. It’s perfectly understandable if you want to give your marriage another chance despite relating to a lot of the warning signs you should divorce your spouse.

Ending a marriage is never easy. If you want to make sure you’ve exhausted all your options before going down the D-lane, consider going into couples’ therapy. With the help of an expert, you can get to the root of your issues and find a way to work through them. Even if you do decide to get a divorce, seeking therapy can help you resolve the trauma from a toxic marriage and rebuild your life. Whatever be the situation, skilled and experienced therapists on Bonobology’s panel are here for you.

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