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 July 25, 2014 |

Discussions and articles frequently focus on the legal and emotional issues surrounding the end of a marriage. Information and opinions are plentiful about property settlements, child custody and spousal support – the considerations necessary once a divorce decision is made. Less seems to be written and said about the months or years leading up to the dissolution of marriage.

Sometimes it’s harder to make a decision than live with the choice you make. Baton Rouge spouses may agonize for a very long time, often in private, over how well a relationship is functioning. A series of arguments with a spouse or an unresolved marital problem can trigger the first thoughts about divorce.

It’s hard to go down that road and consider a union meant to last through life might not make it that far. You may base the happiness of a marriage on what you see in other relationships. That could be an unfair comparison, since no two people or couples interact in the same way.

What’s good for the relationships of others may not apply to yours. Advice from friends or family members stems from what worked for them. Only you and your spouse can determine whether you have a “good” marriage or, during troubled times, a salvageable, workable relationship.

Deciding to remain in a marriage may not produce the results you imagined. Staying comes with the realization change is required. Spouses only have the power to change themselves – a partner’s attitudes and actions are out of your control.

There’s no automatic happiness attached to continuing or leaving a marriage. Obstacles occur either way. Children may respond negatively, whether parents stay together or separate, depending upon their environment following the adults’ decision.

Professional family counselors can help spouses work together or individually through relationship issues. A family law attorney will clarify the legal issues for spouses considering or firmly deciding to divorce.

Source: The Huffington Post, “Four True Things About Marriage, Divorce and Families” Magda Pecsenye, Jul. 16, 2014

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