Common Reasons for the Breakdown of a Marriage

The reasons why couples divorce are as numerous and unique as the couples themselves. As each marriage progresses through time the spouses’ two personalities ebb and flow – one stronger at one time, the other weak; the two personalities melding and harmonizing for a period, and then dramatically contrasting. Each conflict is different from what the same couple may have experienced at a different time in their lives and it is different from what another couple may experience even when the disputed issue is the same or similar.

If you are approaching a divorce, you may find it difficult to talk about it, fearing that few people would truly understand what you are going through. And, in many respects, what you are going through is especially unique to you.

Nevertheless, many couples go through similar events and disputes throughout their marriages. For some, the crises bring them closer together. For others, the problems create an irreparable rift.

Fault or no-fault

Although many states have only “no-fault” divorce, Virginia still allows you the option of filing for divorce based on grounds. Adultery is one of the grounds.

Some marriages can survive and even thrive after one spouse commits adultery multiple times, but for others, the betrayal is too deep even after a single night’s fling or an “emotional affair” that never became physical.

Other problems may not be grounds for a fault divorce, but they often are the underlying reason why couples separate and eventually divorce. Common issues that test a marriage include:

  • Financial differences, including having too little money or disagreeing over how to spend the money;
  • Addiction to drugs, alcohol, gambling, pornography or sex;
  • Extreme dedication to a job or obsessive ambition; and
  • A tragedy such as the death of a child, a chronic illness, a job loss or other unexpected misfortune;

These issues can wear your relationship down. They can destroy the trust between you and your spouse. They can make you feel as if you are not a priority in your spouse’s life.

Then there are many times when couples simply were not compatible in the beginning and time has only made them grow further apart. They may have different philosophies about having or raising children, different faith backgrounds, or drastically different long-term goals in life. For these couples, the tension and discord or the distance and loneliness within the marriage are more than they can endure.

To discuss the factors that have led to the breakdown of your marriage and the best path for proceeding forward, seek the counsel of a compassionate attorney who focuses his or her practice on family law in northern Virginia.