The decision to end your marriage is final, that much is certain. However, deciding how – and when – you will move forward requires careful thought.
It is important to consider the timing when you pursue a divorce, but many people wonder if they should act now or wait. So, here are a few things to consider.
If you plan to put off divorce for the kids…
This is not always the best course of action. As we have discussed in previous blog posts, waiting to divorce until children get older could actually create more tension in the home. In turn, this could generate more conflict, and it is the conflict that affects kids most, not necessarily the divorce itself.
Of course, you want to protect your children. It can work in some situations, perhaps if both parents commit to what one therapist termed a “parenting marriage.” However, in many cases, putting off divorce solely to stay together for the kids might create more issues than it solves.
If you put off divorce for timing purposes…
There are times when you may strategically hold off on getting a divorce. Kiplinger notes a few instances where waiting may help, such as waiting until you have another housing option available.
Timing will generally depend on your circumstances. For example, consider:
- Your finances: Will your current financial situation support moving to a new place, dividing property and taking care of yourself? Are you or your spouse out of work? You may hold off on beginning the process of divorce until you feel more financially stable.
- Your mental health: You should financially prepare for divorce, but it is also important to prepare mentally and emotionally. You can reduce the stress you feel by making a careful plan before taking action in the divorce process.
North Carolina only requires spouses to live separately for one year and one day before seeking a divorce. However, this separation period could very well be longer if you need time to prepare yourself.
Note: The “right time” may not ever come
There are certainly signs that it might be time to get a divorce. Timing the actual process can be more difficult to do. Just like there is no “perfect” time to get married, or start a family, there may not be a “perfect” time to get a divorce. What matters most is planning strategically to take the next step, so you can protect your future and your family.