The month of January is known, somewhat notoriously, as “Divorce Month” because of the jump in divorce rates at the beginning of the year. While numbers vary from state to state (and even year to year), it’s not too difficult to imagine why January sees more marital breakups than other months.
It could be a result of the recently passed holidays – where struggling couples, stressed by families, money, and holiday pressures simply can’t take it anymore. Others may file for divorce after the New Year for tax purposes, and still others wait until after the holiday season to protect love ones or not distract their families.
Other potential reasons (and these are all just possibilities) include couples thinking that the holiday season would bring them together, only to find out their troubles still existed come January 1st.
Now, there’s a reason for bringing this up – many of the people filing for divorce in January, for a range of personal reasons, may be falling into a trap of unrealistic expectations, seasonal depression, or any number of distractive ways of thinking that take them away from working on their marriages, and make them see divorce as the only option.
We’re here to say that divorce is NOT the only option, and that falling into the traps of “Divorce Month” can be avoided if you are actively working to keep your marriage strong.
If you know that this time of year may present more temptations to give up on your marriage than others, you can recognize the stressors as they happen, and see them for what they truly are – distractions to working on your marriage, an “easy out” that only seems appealing because of other elements of this time of year.
Instead of falling victim to the divorce trends that happen in January, look to a very different New Year tradition, and resolve to make your marriage the best it can be this year!
It might mean taking stock of what’s led you and your spouse to a breaking point, and honestly evaluating what’s a component of the marriage, and what outside influences (like holiday stress) might be influencing your feelings of connectivity.
Don’t become another statistic of “Divorce Month,” if you can help it at all – concentrate on making your marriage the best it can possibly be through patience and open, honest communication, and if you’re feeling the pressures of the season, talk to your spouse and get to the source of the problem before you make any drastic decisions.