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During an initial consultation, I'm often asked when does one know when it is time to finally file for a divorce, when the relationship is over.  "When a conversation is pointless,"  I often answer.

Communication is a great marker to determine whether there is any reason to carry on.  If you can communicate, actually talk to the other person so that you are heard and you hear them, then, so long as both of you want to, there is a reason to keep trying.  Of course, if you don't want to, then you've already answered your question. 

But if you can't communicate, if he doesn't listen, if she already has her pat and pithy response before your sentence has been concluded with it's period, then further efforts are quite possibly pointless.  Of course, if, in the midst of the hopelessness you both express that this is not how you mean to act toward each other and would like to seek a counselor's help to learn the tools of effective communication, then all is not lost; there is hope; the relationship is not pointless.

If communication has become pointless, try to resist the urge to respond with anything less than your better angels.  Once upon a time you cared.  Once upon a time, so did he.  It's just time to exit as gracefully as possible for this, too, shall pass.  

If you can identify the finality of your relationship, you can be in charge of your method of moving on.  It is the uncertainty that causes the turbulence, I believe. It is the turbulence that causes the anger.  

Divorces that are not motivated by anger, that are past that stage, are much easier on the client.  Resolve is a wonderful thing.  These divorces cost less and take less time, generally, because of the client's steady resolve.

So, is your communication with your spouse pointless?  Do you define your relationship in mostly negative terms?  The sun will rise again tomorrow.  How many more days are you willing to live your life pointless?

Michael Manely

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