The process of divorce is often difficult. The decision to get a divorce is often difficult. And once you’ve made the huge decision and begun the process, you are likely to want nothing more (and nothing less) than to be done with it.
One of the difficulties about the hugeness of the decision to divorce is that it may take a long time to reach the firm conviction that the marriage is at an end. Most people find that they need to remain with “both feet” in the marriage until they have exhausted the prospect of saving the marriage. But then, once there is a realization that the marriage is over, there can be the strong desire to be done with the divorce “yesterday.” In retrospect, people regret having given the marriage a shot for as long as they did.
This can be a real problem with the financial aspects of marriage and divorce. If you have “both feet” in the marriage, you are still entangled financially. Once you decide to divorce, you are STILL entangled financially…until the process is complete. While the divorce is pending, the process of getting unentangled financially can be miserably slow. The financial conflict one experiences with their spouse can seem like a hemorrhage that must be stopped, but cannot be stopped.
It is important to realize that the financial terms of the divorce will take shape eventually, but probably not as soon as you might wish. Consider it as a “before” and “after” scenario, in which the “before” is living together as husband and wife, and the “after” is having the divorce complete and being unentangled regarding day-to-day finances. It takes weeks, if not months, to get from the “before” to the “after.” That may result in three or four months more of “financial jointness” than you bargained for – the consequence of making a careful, and not hasty, decision to divorce. In the long run, you will likely sleep better knowing that dissolving the marriage was your last resort, after pursuing all other options. But the process, in the short run, is an extremely difficult and stressful experience.