A divorce is never easy. It is an emotional and frustrating experience that everyone would avoid if they could. This is especially true when a spouse has a mental illness.
Divorcing something with mental illness changes the whole process. The divorce pretty much becomes contested because it is almost impossible to negotiate with the person. When this happens, the process becomes more costly and time-consuming. The divorce process can be even more frustrating.
The good news is that a mental illness cannot prevent a divorce. You should not feel guilty about ending the marriage. You cannot change the other person, so do not even try. Instead, focus on yourself. Here are some tips to help.
Do Not Try to Change Your Spouse
Mental illness is not something that goes away quickly. You cannot reason with someone who is mentally ill, so why even try? It is not worth it. Focus on things you can control, like your feelings.
Do Not Rush Things
Those who are struggling with mental illness have their ups and downs. They have their good days and bad days. Therefore, if you decide to divorce, know that it is not going to be finalized overnight. You need to wait for your spouse to be in a good state of mind where they can think clearly and be reasonable. Do not rush things, and be mindful of the best time to talk to them.
Do Not Feel Guilty
Your spouse’s mental illness has likely drained you of all your energy. You may be so exhausted that you are ready to move on. Do not feel guilty about this. It is OK not to want to make any more sacrifices. You may want to focus on your own happiness, and it is perfectly acceptable to feel this way. Your mental health is important too, and you have the right to be happy. If that means ending the marriage, that is what it takes.
Keep the Divorce Process Amicable
It can be frustrating dealing with a mentally ill spouse, but for everyone’s sake, keep things as friendly as possible. Try to be reasonable with your spouse and avoid fighting over things that are insignificant. It’s best if you can make the divorce process as easy as possible for both of you.
Think About Your Children
Divorce will be hard on your children. In severe cases, a person with a mental illness may be barred from child custody. If you want or do not want your spouse to have custody, you may need to prove your point. Is custody in the child’s best interest? Would the children be harmed if your spouse had custody?
Contact Us Today
A mental illness can affect a divorce in many ways. If your spouse has one, you may have to have full custody of the child and help pay for living expenses if your spouse is unable to work.
How will a mental illness affect your divorce? The Law Offices of Michael A. Robbins can help you with negotiations and keep you from losing your cool. To schedule a consultation, call (248) 646-7980 or fill out the online form.