Things have been rough between you and your spouse for some time now. You’ve talked to a few close friends, and each has offered advice. One recommended seeing a licensed marriage counselor with your spouse. Another heard issues in your conversation that sounded similar to his or her own experience and suggested divorce.

Perhaps those thoughts had already crossed your mind. Only you can determine if your relationship with your spouse can bounce back or if it has run its course. Even when the latter is true, many Arizona spouses choose to stay together anyway, sometimes for the sake of their kids, other times because of their personal belief systems. Whether you stay or file for divorce is up to you, and if certain issues seem to point in that direction, you’ll want to build a strong support network from the start.

Spouses who struggle with these issues often divorce

Do you and your spouse discuss your problems or has your communication broken down into a series of mutterings, grunts or sour facial expressions? When one or both spouses shuts down emotionally, it often has a stonewalling effect on a marriage.

You might also find yourself doing these things if you feel overwhelmed or defensive toward your spouse. It’s sometimes easier to grunt and leave the room than to face problems and have difficult discussions.

Criticism can cause a lot of damage

Most Arizona spouses want their partners to compliment them on occasion or to speak affectionately toward them and with respect. If your spouse seems to have nothing to offer but criticism, insults or sarcasm, it’s understandable that such issues might have a negative effect on your marriage.

Another predictor of divorce

In some situations, a spouse’s criticism turns into outright contempt. When you got married, you expected to stay with your spouse throughout your life. You knew there would be ups and downs, but you didn’t foresee a time would come when there were all downs and no ups.

These issues and others are often precursors to divorce. If you’ve already filed a petition or are planning to do so, it’s helpful to reach out for support from someone who knows how to navigate the system. This might be a family member, close friend or co-worker. Many spouses also rely on experienced family law attorneys to help protect their interests in court.