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Divorce should never be taken lightly. Even in the most amiable divorce there are going to be emotional ups and downs. There are going to be hard days and days when you have to make hard decisions. Before you decide to divorce, ask yourself these 5 questions – and answer them honestly.

1. Do You Still Care? It’s a difficult decision if you still have strong feelings for a person, but something in the marriage is very wrong. Maybe, you’re the one paying all the bills – and your partner is the one spending all the money. Maybe, you have completely different ideas on raising the children. Examine all your choices. Could couple’s counseling make a difference? Could getting counseling for yourself clarify whether you can accept the situation or if you’re ready for divorce? Make sure you address your feelings and feel certain about your decision.

2. Are You Threatening? It can become a pattern. You get mad. You get hurt. You threaten to get a divorce until you’re not sure if you want a divorce or not. You might threaten a divorce because you think it’s a way to make your partner take your problems seriously. Or, your anger got the best of you. Don’t back yourself into a corner. Ask yourself if you are really ready to ask for a divorce. Are you at peace with that decision and ready to follow through? If the answer is yes, it’s time to have a conversation with your spouse about your intentions.

3. Did your Marriage Ever Work? Some marriages last – even last a long time – without ever being a real marriage with two people working together. Instead, these marriages are two people going their own ways but living under the same roof. Are decisions in your marriage made based on the wants of each individual or are they shared decisions that are made to benefit the marriage? If you’re living in a marriage that is only legal and not really a shared partnership, do you want to continue or is it time to seriously discuss divorce?

4. Are You Acting or Reacting? There are times of stress when you may feel like your spouse has let you down. It can be a series of little things or a big thing like infidelity. Now, you have to ask yourself if you are talking about divorce because you want to end the marriage or are you acting out of emotion. Be certain.

4. Do You Feel Confident of your Decision? Make sure you are at peace with yourself and sure of your decision – even though there will probably be moments of doubt. Prepare for the divorce. Make sure you have your finances in order. Talk to your children – together if possible. Talk to a counselor if you think that will help. Look for a divorce lawyer who makes you feel comfortable and is experienced in the laws of your state. Then, go forward with a good attitude, trying to be fair to your soon-to-be-ex by compromising as needed.

Getting a divorce is never easy. Whether you’re looking for a divorce lawyer in Gilbert make sure you find the right attorney. That’s the one who makes you feel comfortable and makes you feel secure that your interests are being protected.