The decision to end a marriage is one of the most difficult and significant that an individual can make. This is especially true in cases where a couple has minor-aged children as providing for the physical, emotional and financial wellbeing of children will continue to be a shared and central focus in both parents' lives for years to come. The binding ties that children create with an ex-spouse are one reason a divorcing couple may elect to seek a collaborative divorce.
Today's families are very different from those of the 1960s. Not only are many same-sex couples getting married and choosing to have children, but the roles of many heterosexual spouses are converging. This finding underlies many of the key findings from a recent Pew Research Center report.
While some marriages and subsequent divorces are wrought with conflict and animosity, many marriages fail because spouses simply grow apart or realize they no longer share common life goals. For couples who desire a divorce, but wish to avoid litigation and retain more control over decisions related to the division of marital assets and child custody, a collaborative divorce may be a good option.
We've all seen the movies or heard stories of conflict-ridden divorces where former spouses duke it out in court. Even in cases where a couple's decision to divorce was mutual and a split amicable, things can quickly become contentious when the divorce process ensues. So is every unhappy husband and wife who wants out of a marriage destined to suffer the adverse emotional, psychological and financial effects of a horrible divorce? The answer, thankfully, is no.
When a couple falls in love and decides to marry, it's likely hard to imagine that those feelings could ever change or diminish in any way. However, as the months and years progress and life experiences and changes occur, the relationship between spouses must also adjust and change accordingly. Children, a job loss, financial problems, death of a family member or friend or a move to another city or state are just some of the many life changes that are sure to have an impact on a relationship and marriage.
The national divorce rate has consistently hovered at around 50 percent for years now. Divorce is no longer seen as something to be feared or shamed, but a tool that can lead to personal happiness and free someone from the bonds of an unfulfilling marriage. That being said, traditional divorce litigation continues to be a lengthy and expensive proposition.
Chances are you're familiar with the traditional wedding vow. It includes such lines as, I take you from this day forward, for better or worse, in sickness and in health.