So you think there’s no way you can stop your divorce. You can’t talk without screaming at each other. You hate the sight of each other. You never see each other, you’re up before he’s up and asleep by the time he comes back from his “overtime”, probably with that hussy in his office.
As far as you’re concerned, it’s over, finito, the end. And besides, you both have retained lawyers to get the divorce proceedings going.
But, if there’s still some glimmer of hope left, if deep down inside you still love each other, can you still stop your divorce at this late stage? The marriage experts will tell you yes, and that it is indeed possible to stop your divorce and turn your marriage around, no matter how impossible it all looks right now. Here’s what they say you must do —
1. Call off the lawyers
The lawyers are retained to get the divorce done and settled. If your marriage has any chance of saving, your first act is to sack all the lawyers. Do it or lose it.
2. Declare your willingness to work together
As in any situation where a relationship has dramatically fallen apart or doesn’t even exist for all intents and purposes, you will need to put in the effort to work together to make the relationship work again. How willing you are to really work together will determine whether you will succeed or merely make things worse.
3. Focus on making things right again, not what is making it wrong
If you are indeed on the brink of divorce, then you both probably have a massive list of what’s wrong with the marriage and with each other. This is exactly what you need to put aside to turn the marriage around and stop your divorce.
Instead, go through this exercise — each of you take pen and paper, go to different corners of the room, and start listing down why the marriage works, what you like or love about it and your spouse, and what you think you can achieve together from now on as husband and wife. In other words, look to what the future holds for you.
4. List out all the issues and what you need to do with each
This is where you can both pull out and constructively make use of that “what’s wrong with this marriage and my husband/wife” list of issues you have. You will have to literally work at each item until you resolve it. No exceptions. The possible solutions are — dropping it altogether because the issue just doesn’t seem important anymore, coming to an agreement that both of you can accept, one or both of you compromising on your stand, or agreeing to disagree on something. Again, no exceptions. Everything must be discussed and resolved.
5. Start everyday with a a marriage “renovation plan”
Everyday at breakfast, you both need to decide what you’re going to do that day based on the issue resolution discussion you had. You will each need to fulfill the completion of whatever actions you commit to do that day that will help the marriage heal. This could be as crucial as being less critical of your spouse and his or her views, or as trivial as agreeing to change the way you mess up the bedroom when dressing for work.
6. Call in the marriage counselors
Understand that you will only be able to do so much to mend the marriage because you are both too close to the situation. If you can, once you call off the lawyers, call in the marriage counselors or therapists. Expert help is instrumental in saving almost every marriage that has pulled back from the brink of divorce.