How do you break off a marriage?

Ending a relationship is a difficult and emotional process. While the reasons for a breakup can vary, the importance of approaching the situation with sensitivity and honesty is key. 

Recognising that a breakup will cause pain for both parties is the first step in approaching the conversation to break off the marriage with empathy. Understanding this shared experience can help soften the emotional impact. If you have decided that there is no going back and you do not want to continue in the relationship then you should focus on the practical steps that need to be taken. 


Before initiating the breakup conversation, it's crucial to emotionally prepare for the distress that may come. Consider the potential impact on your daily routine and mental health, as well as anticipating your partner's reaction. Opt for a time and place conducive to an honest, serious discussion. Avoid public spaces unless you feel more secure and choose an environment that ensures privacy and comfort for both of you.

Starting this type of conversation can be tricky, but you could use sensitive starters to broach the subject such as "I want to talk about our relationship", "I feel our relationship has run its course" or “I’m not happy right now”. Be honest about your feelings without resorting to blame or anger. Use "I" statements to express your perspective, and be prepared for an emotional reaction while keeping your intentions clear and succinct.

If you share a living space, proactive consideration of temporary living arrangements can ease the post-breakup transition. Knowing your options and limitations can give a sense of relief and prevent discomfort.

Once you have had the conversation, you may want to work out with your spouse how you will proceed with a divorce or separation. You may want to start by asking yourselves whether you want to do the process yourself or whether you want to get legal support from a family solicitor.


How to approach the subject with your children

Speaking to the children can be the hardest part of a marriage breakdown as you don’t want to disrupt their daily routine or make them feel unloved or like the break up is their fault. However, it is better for them to be in an environment where both of their parents are happy rather than in one that is tense and unhappy. 

You can explain this to your children, not forgetting to mention that your love for them doesn’t change. Be open and honest with them but make sure to withhold information about the break-up that may cause distress, discomfort or anger such as intricate divorce details.

Ending a relationship is undoubtedly a difficult process, but navigating it with empathy, honesty, and respect can make it a little easier. 

How Can GloverPriest Help?

At GloverPriest, we provide friendly and transparent family law advice. If you would like further help on child arrangements or divorce, please don’t hesitate to speak to one of our expert family lawyers today. Complete our enquiry form.


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