Are there good reasons to delay a divorce? Are their bad reasons? Yes – there are both! The answer lies in what is right for you as a couple and what is best for your family as a whole. Let’s take a closer look at the pros and cons of delaying a divorce.

The Pros of Delaying a Divorce

Delaying a divorce for financial reasons could have several benefits – you could have a better opportunity to rid yourself of debt, to sell your home in a better market, to build up your emergency fund, or to simply get your money in order. Delaying a divorce for your children may simply give your kids more time to get used to the idea – or more time for you to help them with the transition. Delaying a divorce to work on your marriage can give both of you the peace of mind that you are making the right decision.

The Cons of Delaying a Divorce

Delaying divorce means delaying your fresh start and delaying your new life. Delaying divorce could also mean prolonging the heartache, hurt, and pain of divorce. Delaying divorce could harm your kids, who may long for an end to the conflict and limbo that comes along with divorce. Delaying divorce could prolong your financial dependence on someone else and your opportunity to make your own money.

Common Reasons Couples Decide to Delay Divorce

You are both comfortable with the idea of a divorce, you are both ready to start new chapters in your lives, and you are both in agreement that your love has come to an end. However, divorce simply doesn’t fit into your greater plans. What about the house? What about the kids? What about your shared debt?

Especially in the face of the recent recession and in light of recent studies about the effects of divorce on young children, more and more couples in America are delaying divorce even after making the decision to split.

  • Delaying divorce for children. Several new studies have found that young children are more affected by divorce than older kids and teens – information that has led to a number of couples waiting to file divorce papers. However, experts warn that staying in a loveless marriage filled with ongoing conflicts can be even more damaging to children than a divorce.
  • Delaying divorce for financial reasons. It is difficult to divorce if you can’t sell your house, if your mortgage is underwater, if you are currently unemployed, or if you have large amounts of shared debt. In 2008, divorce rates dropped across the country as many unhappy couples decided to tough it out until their financial situation improved.
  • Delaying divorce to save the marriage. Some couples decide to delay divorce in a last attempt to rekindle love, patch up issues, and ultimately stay together. These couples may seek marriage counseling, try a trial separation, or simply re-double their efforts before finalizing a divorce.

Is delaying a divorce a good idea? It depends on the individual and the couple. In some cases, delaying a divorce may only accomplish delaying a fresh start, your healing, and the healing of your children. In other cases, delaying a divorce can help you organize your finances before the big change or to give you the opportunity to sell your home at a reasonable price. Just remember: be sure that you are delaying your divorce for sensible reasons and not because you are having trouble letting go.

Our Washington Divorce Lawyers are Ready to Help

Are you unsure of how to move forward with your divorce? The next step very well may be finding a strong, experienced Seattle divorce attorney to guide you through the process fairly and quickly. Call the Law Offices of Molly B. Kenny today at 425-460-0550 to set up a confidential consultation.

Molly B. Kenny
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Divorce and Child Custody Attorney Serving Bellevue and Seattle Washington
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