Making the decision to end your marriage is not easy. Sometimes, the comfort and familiarity you experience with each other can make it hard to walk away. If, however, you are being mentally or physically abused, it’s important to understand that your marriage is unhealthy.
The thought of leaving may be scary, but it may also be the only way to guarantee your safety. If you have children, it’s really important to protect them from the abuser. You may not want to break up the family, but the simple truth is that the best thing that you can do for yourself and your children is to remove yourselves from the situation.
Steps to take before you leave your spouse
There are several things that you can do to ensure that you can safely leave your marriage. The more prepared you are, the easier it will be to make a move when the time comes.
- Get your finances in order. Save as much money as you can so that you can stand on your own two feet. Abusers use dependency to control their victims. Establishing your own financial independency will make the transition easier for you.
- Gather your important documents. You’ll need to take your birth certificate, social security card, passport, driver’s license, and bank account numbers with you.
- Make plans to stay with a trusted friend or family member. Having a place to go before you leave is important. However, if you don’t have anyone who can take you in, there are other options. Contact an organization such as The National Domestic Violence Hotline. These folks can help you safely leave an abusive situation.
It’s a big decision to leave your marriage. Know that you don’t have to do this alone. Contact an experienced legal advisor to help you navigate through the divorce process.