There are times when one feels one is ready for a divorce, but a closer look reveals otherwise. That is why preparing a divorce checklist is an absolute must if you are thinking about a divorce. Divorce is not a reversible decision, and the implications are far fetched.
Divorce is never easy. Even if you have been abused, neglected, or pregnant with a child – divorcing your spouse can be hard. Imagining life after being divorced is hard. Apart from the emotional and mental pressure, divorce needs work and getting your affairs in order. And a lot of money too. The legality of it is just the tip of the iceberg.
If you are deciding to divorce then you could also be thinking, “Should I get a divorce checklist?” Yes, the divorce checklist will allow you to ask the important divorce questions and you would know what would be your considerations before getting a divorce.
Related Reading: 10 Things To Do When You Are Thinking About Divorce
While you lie awake beside a person you were once madly in love with and spend days feeling loveless and neglected, the question of getting your divorce has crossed your mind.
And while you are getting down to the dirty details, do you feel you are rushing into it too fast? At other times, you feel you should have done it long back because the warning signs of divorce were always there.
The point is: With all the confusion in the head, assess yourself well first and be sure if you really want a divorce or not. Go through the divorce checklist below and make an informed decision.
So before setting your mind to it and filing for a divorce, here are a few things you need to consider.
1. Why do I want this divorce?
Surely, seeing this as number one in the divorce checklist isn’t a surprise, is it? If you feel that your marriage is stalling and that nothing can make things better in the marriage, ask yourself: why is it that you feel this way?
Not to try to change your mind about this but before you put yourself through a tedious process, it’s better to pinpoint what aspect of the marriage is actually making you do this? Is your spouse abusive?
Are there deep-rooted issues in the marriage that you did not know about before getting married? Has your spouse cheated on you? Can you no longer feel love for this spouse of yours? It’s time to figure it out.
Related reading: Why Sometimes Divorce Is A Better Option Than Staying Married
2. Have I tried to fix what’s wrong in our marriage?
If you are deciding to divorce then loneliness or constant bickering is making you take a huge step as ending a marriage. But you can hold on to it and try fixing your marriage. Most marriages tend to stall after years of living together, but that doesn’t mean it cannot be better.
Have you tried working on your marriage before getting a divorce? Have you opted for marriage counselling? If you are contemplating a divorce, don’t you owe it to yourself to see if you are strong enough to reinvent this marriage? Make it a priority in your divorce checklist.
Related reading: Should I divorce my abusive husband?
3. Should I try marriage counselling?
Talk to your spouse and see if your spouse feels the state of your marriage as an issue. If you are keeping the thought of a divorce from your spouse, just start a general talk of how you feel you are drifting apart.
If your spouse feels the same way, find out if they are willing to give marriage counselling a chance. Marriage counselling could help you figure out where you are going wrong. How to decide to divorce or stay married? If this is what you have been thinking, then marriage counselling would make things crystal clear.
4. What about the kids?
Your children will feel the worst sting in the divorce. Children are impressionable and a move away from their normal life can change them. Sometimes they understand better that a divorce is on its way, maybe even better than you.
Keeping the child in the loop with the changing scenario at home is the right place to begin with. There are post-divorce things to take care of too, but cross the bridge when you get there.
Also, there is the question of if you will want your child to shuffle between his mother and father, or if you need monetary help from your soon-to-be ex-spouse. These are the most important considerations to make before deciding to divorce.
Related Reading: 12 Co-Parenting Rules For Divorced Couples
5. How are my finances?
Starting a new life after the divorce and having a child with you means the entire finances of the household will fall on you solely. Before you send your spouse packing, you need to take a look at your finances.
In fact, it is one of the most important points to consider when you make a divorce checklist. Are you a stay-at-home mother with minimal experience? Do you have money saved up on the side?
Do you have enough degree to get a proper job that pays well enough to raise a child (if you have any)?
Get your finances in order. Joint assets need to be divided and make an estimate with your lawyer and create a divorce mediation checklist to understand how much you get to keep and how much you are willing to let go. That being said, you will need a lawyer well suited to your needs. Check out financial assistance for divorced moms.
6. Do I have a good lawyer?
Good lawyer does not necessarily mean someone who charges way too high for you. Finding a good lawyer is another task altogether.
You want someone who will offer you the best legal advice according to the plans you have in mind; not someone who will just brush aside your concerns and deal with every situation the way they deem fit.
If you are thinking, “Should I get a divorce checklist?” then how to get the best lawyer and fund them should be on top of the list.
7. Can I live a life without him/her?
It might hit you one afternoon while you are browsing through the lawyers that you can hire. Do you see yourself living a life without your spouse? Does the thought make you jump in glee or do you have mixed emotions about that? Do you feel there will be a new dawn after divorce? You have loved this spouse of yours and you still might.
Asking the right divorce questions is the key. Even if you get the divorce, will you try and keep contact with them or get jealous if they start dating or remarry? There are many emotional factors at work here and you cannot ignore them. Work on that gut feeling you are getting.
Related reading: I almost got a divorce and then realised I wanted him back
8. Can I ever be happy in this marriage?
Because if you cannot be happy, what’s the point in being together? That being said, while you are considering divorce all you see are the negative side of it. Try and remember that happiness can be attained again.
If there is a slight hope that this marriage isn’t as broken as you think it to be and that it’s possible to be as happy (if not happier) in this marriage, hold on to the divorce.
However, you can choose not to question your decision if you have been cheated on by your spouse or if you have an abusive spouse.
Divorce is the end of a marriage. Prepare a personalized checklist before taking the plunge to file for a divorce and before you sign those papers.