1

Do you still have feelings for your spouse?

Search your heart. If you find love is still there, work on the relationship before considering divorce. It will allow you, if need be, to face divorce with a clearer understanding of yourself, your spouse and your choices.

2

Was it really a marriage after all?

Have you and your spouse focused on individual needs, rather than building the strong sense of "we" that sustains a real marriage? If so, can you commit to learning how to think in terms of what is good for "us"? If not, perhaps there is no marriage to fight for.

3

Are you threatening divorce just to make a point?

You're angry. You're frustrated, and your spouse just won't listen. Threatening divorce might seem like the best way to get your way, but does it sustain a marriage? Couples therapy could get you what you really want. At the very least, you'll gain a better perspective on the question of divorce.

4

Mature self-awareness or emotional overreaction-why are you thinking about divorce?

Divorce must make sense for you, now and in the future. Deciding in an emotionally charged moment only compounds problems. If you cannot let go of emotional attachments to your spouse, perhaps you are not ready for divorce.

5

Why do you want a divorce?

Let's be clear: divorce doesn't repair marriages; it ends them. It doesn't make people change; it just frees them to build new relationships with others. Attempting to use divorce for any other purpose is pointless.

6

Do you know the legal aspects of divorce?

What are the divorce laws in your state? What are the community property laws? What about child custody? Understanding your legal position is essential to making sound decisions about divorce.

7

Are you aware of the financial aspects of divorce?

How is child support calculated? How will divorce affect your taxes? Will spousal support be required? The financial aspects of divorce are critical factors to consider before you decide.

8

Are you ready to deal with the down side of divorce?

Beyond the financial and lifestyle changes, there are dashed dreams, hurt feelings and grief. Are you prepared to help your children and others cope with their sense of loss? Is your support network ready to help you?

9

Will you be able to face divorce with maturity?

As in most things, attitude goes a long way in easing life's difficult transitions. Bitterness and revenge only muddy the process and pollute future interactions with your spouse. Keep in mind that, if you have children, negotiating with your spouse will likely always be part of your life. Approach divorce with dignity and self-confidence, offer understanding and respect, and you're more likely to get the same in return.