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Every divorce is unique, but many have similar elements

When you and your spouse were first dating, you may have spent hours in deep conversation. You likely shared your favorite movies, books and music, and you probably revealed your tastes in food and clothing. Maybe your talks went deeper, touching on religion, career and your preferences for children.

Where did all that go? Now that you and your spouse are considering divorce, you may be spending time wondering what went wrong. While many people say that they simply drifted apart, psychologists say it is often more than that. Most couples go through tough times, but the way they handle those challenges may decide if they divorce or stay together.

Many paths lead to divorce

Money is a frequent burden in marriages. More couples struggle with money-related issues than with any other issue. However, not having enough money isn't always the problem. If you and your spouse came into the marriage with differing philosophies of earning, spending and saving, you may have found yourself arguing more often or retreating to your own corner in sullen silence. Some couples can't stand the strain of one spouse earning considerably more than the other does, and this strain may eventually lead to a break.

Other common struggles for couples include:

  • Infidelity
  • Addiction
  • Chronic or debilitating illness
  • The illness or death of a child

While some couples may come through these challenges stronger and more committed to each other than ever, for others, the stress is too great.

Coming to terms

It may also be that, despite your long conversations and intimate sharing before your marriage, you and your spouse simply weren't compatible. If you were from different religious faiths or family backgrounds, you may have had difficulty compromising on certain issues, creating a confusion of loyalties. Therapy is often helpful in situations like this, but you or your spouse may have definite opinions about seeking marriage counseling.

Whatever the reason -- and perhaps you still can't put your finger on it -- the important issue now is that you get through the divorce with all your rights intact and your future secure. This can be accomplished with a fair property settlement and equitable child custody agreement. For the best possible results, you may wish to seek the advice of a Maryland family law attorney.

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