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Soldiering On: How to Fight Through and Against Divorce Warfare

One oft-cited statistic in discussions about divorce is that four out of five times, it’s only one spouse wanting to end the marriage. What this means is that the unwilling party will do anything they can to keep things together, even when there is no hope of doing so. This can create significant conflicts on both sides of an issue as the one spouse works to have her wishes honored and the other tries to force something that isn’t there. 

With such competing interests, it’s only natural that things can get ugly, but if you find yourself in one of these contentious types of divorce, take heart. There is a way through. Here’s how you can fight through it and against it. 

Fighting Through It

Demand and give respect. Too often you’ll have one spouse demanding respect while refusing to give it themselves. This can be seen in an adulterous spouse, who places her needs front-and-center without really caring how it affects her spouse. Similarly, a spouse, who doesn’t want out of the marriage, can get so wrapped up in their own wants and problems that they refuse to hear what their spouse is telling them with the words, “I want a divorce.” It can be the hardest thing to do when you’re ready to move on with your life — or when you’re trying to preserve something that isn’t working — but resolving to both give and demand respect will solve many issues between parties. 

Fighting Against It

While the above sounds nice, it isn’t always possible to keep calmness and respect as the order of the day. When your spouse won’t be denied their fight, you can fight back by not giving them what they want. How do you do that? By not engaging in any words or actions that will escalate the conflict. Keep your eyes on the prize — getting through the divorce and setting your life on the right path — and be goal-oriented. Repress any urge toward an emotional outburst that you may feel. Be cold. Dry. Businesslike. If you aren’t playing by their rules, they’ll eventually have to stop playing by them as well. 

What were some things that helped you through a contentious divorce or breakup? Sound off in the comments section. 

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