Our blog often discusses divorce legal issues and how they can be handled. However, as many Ohioans know, the process of divorce starts well before consulting legal professionals and taking the matter to a negotiating table or court. In fact, studies have shown that divorce can be predictable when four certain behaviors are present in a relationship.
First is contempt, a behavior that is a mixture of disgust and anger. In essence, being contemptuous means that an individual is placing his or her partner beneath him or her. Scientists believe this behavior is so toxic that is one of the most telling signs of future divorce. Contempt may occur when a partner thinks that his or her spouse is stupid for doing something that he or she does not understand.
Second is criticism, which turns a statement about an individual's act into one about his or her character. For example, if a spouse always makes a statement about how dirty her spouse is but does so in a way that is negative and attacking on a personal level, then resentment can build and contempt can sneak into the relationship.
Third is defensiveness. By being defensive, an individual places the blame at his or her partner's feet. This, in turn, can feed darker feelings and harbor negative emotions, thus leading to divorce.
Fourth is stonewalling, which occurs when individuals block conversations about difficult topics or during an argument. Walking away, pulling out a cell phone, and remaining quiet during a disagreement can all be stonewalling and keep an individual and his or her partner from addressing serious underlying issues which can continue to fester.
Though these behaviors can be a sign of impending marriage dissolution, it is important to know that many couples experience these issues and disputes at one point or another. However, if these behaviors cause one to contemplate divorce, then he or she may want to familiarize him or herself with the legal process.
Source: Business Insider, "4 behaviors are the most reliable predictors of divorce" Erin Brodwin, Jan. 30, 2015