Coronavirus Stress Leading Some Couples To Consider Divorce
When COVID-19 forced states to issue quarantine orders, few people knew what to expect or how long the restrictions would last. Now that the crisis has dragged on for several weeks, some couples are finding that marital troubles are part of the toll caused by the coronavirus. Close quarters and serious health fears have stirred up old resentments and triggered new problems that could result in a divorce wave once husbands and wives are no longer living under stay-at-home orders.
Many elements contribute to the stress that is leading some spouses to question the future of their marriage, such as:
- Lack of distractions — In an old anecdote, someone tells their spouse, “I married you for better or for worse, but not for lunch.” Marriages can suffer when people are confined together in a home for weeks or months on end. Without time apart during the workday or the ability to go out for a night with one’s friends, small resentments can build.
- Money worries — In the first month after the lockdowns started, more than 20 million people filed for unemployment. Millions more are concerned about what the future holds for them and their families. Disagreements over financial issues can ruin marriages even in normal times. Now, with fears about scarcity of jobs and resources placing couples under even more pressure, tough decisions might have to be made.
- Disagreements about how to deal with COVID-19 — Though most streets are quiet, we can see out our windows and online that there are some sharp disagreements about how to protect oneself against the coronavirus. A couple that doesn’t agree on what types of activities are acceptable and what safety measures are required could have serious problems, especially when children are involved.
- Absence of support mechanisms — When people are having relationship problems, there are usually several places where they can turn for counsel. Now, it might be impossible to converse face-to-face with a trusted loved one, clergy member or therapist. Even talking on the phone could be a problem if a spouse can’t find a time or place to speak privately.
Many times, a crisis intensifies previously existing tensions. A knowledgeable family law mediator can help you look beyond the temporary challenges and help you understand your options going forward. Should you choose to move ahead and dissolve your marriage, a mediator will explain the advantages of alternative dispute resolution, especially given COVID-related court closures and the resulting litigation backlog that will crowd calendars when the doors reopen.
Solutions Divorce Mediation has a strong record of helping divorcing couples reach consensus while saving time and money. We serve residents of Long Island and other parts of New York. To set up a free telephone consultation, please call 1.631.683.8172 or contact us online.