When you think about divorce, you probably think about an unhappy couple that argues often. You think of stress and tension at home. You imagine one person abusing the other or cheating on them. You think of these extremes because they’re often what you see in movies and TV shows.
These things absolutely do happen, but they are not the norm. In fact, in one study, researchers asked people how they felt a year before they got divorced. They did the study for years, talking with couples who were still married repeatedly so that they could compare the results when those couples split up.
In other words, they were not asking a couple how they felt a year ago during their divorce. They were asking them before the couple even knew they would split up, thus giving them accurate information.
What they found was that 60% of the couples who got divorced a year later said that they were happy. Many did not argue. Some did argue, but only some of the time. They were counted as low-conflict couples, the very type of people you would expect not to get divorced in the first place.
This study shows that divorce can come “out of the blue.” It can happen to people who think they’re happy just 12 months earlier. It can happen quickly. You don’t always see the cliche events leading up to it.
If this does happen to you, it is critical that you know what legal steps to take. This is especially true if you never really thought about divorce before because you didn’t think you’d reach this point.