Seek Relationship Help. Divorce Doesnt Always Come with No Regrets

November 13, 2011 by

Seeking relationship help may still be an option even if you have already started divorce proceedings. In a recent study by William J. Doherty, divorcing parents were asked if they were interested in services to help them reconcile. At least 10% of the couples were both interested, and at least 30% of the couples had one spouse interested. That may not seem like a huge number, but what it shows is that, even while deep in the divorce process, some people aren’t sure it’s the right choice for them. There is hope for reconciliation.

Many Couples May Be Better Off Seeking Relationship Help Instead of Divorce

To many couples going through a rough time, divorce can seem like a very attractive option. After all, the one sure way to end the fighting is to end the relationship. You can’t argue with someone who isn’t there. But people fail to realize the other things they lose in the divorce, and many regret it years later or even as soon as the ink dries.

When most people enter into a new relationship after a divorce, things are great at first. Maybe it even seems like things are going better than it did with their first spouse, but the truth is over time, this honeymoon phase will end and you will be back to coping with conflict and negotiating compromises just like you were in your first marriage. In fact, many people find that the conflicts they face are essentially the same. They may start to notice that their partner shares many of the same negative traits as their last one. Suddenly, their old partner doesn’t seem so bad. Maybe he or she even has a few positive traits that this new partner doesn’t.

Why does this happen? It’s because you are attracted to people who have similar traits, usually the same negative ones, whether or not you consciously realize it. So now with your new partner, you will eventually be stuck navigating those same issues when you could have already worked them through by now with your ex-spouse!

Not all marriages can be saved, but from my many years of experience as a Portland marriage counselor, I firmly believe that most of them can be if both partners are willing to put in the effort. I’ve found that couples who work through their issues are often happier than when they first got together. So if you are considering divorce, I strongly encourage you to consider seeking relationship help first.