August 27, 2014

How Do I Tell My Spouse I Want a Divorce?

How to tell someone you want a divorce in Florida

Making the decision to divorce in Florida can feel like a weight has been lifted from your shoulders. It likely marks the end of a period of internal struggle related to how or if you would move forward. But before you take solace in your newfound inner peace, you must share your decision with your spouse. Telling a spouse you would like to end your marriage is not only very challenging, but also very delicate as it can set the tone for the dissolution of marriage proceedings that will follow.

Divorce attorneys are supposed to deal with legal issues. However, family lawyers in Jupiter and West Palm Beach are often asked for advice as to when and how to broach this painful topic.

The following are some tips for making the experience less painful for both you and your spouse:

Location & Timing

  • Choose a time and place where the two of you can be alone and when you are both calm, attentive and free from interruptions or distractions. (Be sure that children are not around and all electronics are turned off.)
  • Give your spouse time to digest the information before addressing specific details. This initial conversation is not the one in which to bring up selling the house or timesharing/contact schedule for the children.

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  • Employ a lead-in rather than immediately dropping the “D” word.
  • Resolve not to use strong language or an angry tone regardless of his/her reaction and stick to it.
  • Avoid blame.
  • Explain your reasons using specific examples in a straight-forward, yet kind way.
  • Rehearse what you plan to say.

Their response

  • Capitalize on your knowledge of your spouse by imagining what their reaction will be and preparing in advance.
  • Listen to his/her side without interruption.
  • Allow your spouse to be involved by actively asking them what they think and encouraging them to keep talking.
  • Despite your reflective impulses, do not defend yourself if his/her commentary is accusatory or critical. Instead reiterate your belief that the marriage is over and you plan to manage the dissolution of the marriage fairly.

Get help from an expert

  • If you are not sure how to proceed, seek advice from a mental health professional. After breaking the news, use mediation to minimize the negative fallout associated with ending a marriage.
  • A mediation session with a disinterested third party can help address some areas of potential conflict outside the courtroom. It can also keep the focus on your children and an outcome that will work for the entire family moving forward.



Board Certified Marital and Family Law Attorney Charles D. Jamieson understands that divorce is an extremely sensitive and important issue. Thanks to extensive experience and a focus on open communication, Attorney Jamieson adeptly addresses the complex issues surrounding dissolution of marriage while delivering excellent personal service. To discuss divorce in Florida, please contact The Law Firm of Charles D. Jamieson, P.A.The Law Firm of Charles D. Jamieson, P.A. or call 561-478-0312.


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