Gossip magazines are reporting that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie may be considering reconciling after Angelina Jolie filed for divorce last fall. Whether this story is a media fabrication or actually authentic, many divorcing parties consider reconciliation. In a study of divorcing couples, one party believed that their marriage could be saved in twenty-five percent of the participants. For another ten percent of the study, both parties believed that their marriage could be saved. Doherty, W. J., Willoughby, B. J., & Peterson, B. (2010). Interest in reconciliation among divorcing parents. Family Court Review, 49, 313-321.
Most couples experience some time during their marriage in which their determination to remain married is tested. These issues are nearly as unique as each person or couple. Some people experience these stressors as a distinct moment or event in time. Other couples experience a slow steady progress in the opposite direction. When you ask why they are getting divorced, many couples state that they have grown apart. They have fallen out of love and their hopes and goals are no longer compatible. These issues are not insurmountable for all marriages. Couples who are jointly dedicated to their relationship may overcome infidelity, financial issues, incompatibility, contempt, boredom and so much more. On the other hand, psychologists normally do not recommend that persons who are psychologically, emotionally or physically abused reconcile.
Couples who successfully reconcile will need to be honest and open about the issues within their relationship in order to move forward in a positive way. They may need to obtain outside advice or counseling. Reunification based upon loneliness or fear may doom the relationship to future failure. Reconciliation does not happen overnight. It may take years for couples to overcome their bad patterns. Both sides may need to heal from perceived and real harms. Without forgiveness, the partners may not be able to move past their negativity. Self-awareness and growth only come through concerted efforts. Both spouses must be willing to correct and change behaviors. They must break old patterns of dysfunction. Both partners must take responsibility for their contribution to the reasons that took their marriage to the brink of divorce or beyond. Both partners must be committed to reconciliation and making their marriage successful.
As shown in multiple studies and many anecdotal stories, even couples in the midst of divorcing may be interested in reconciling. As a divorce attorney, I have been accused of breaking up marriages; however, at Sirkin Law Firm, we would never stand in the way of your reconciliation. Giving up your legal rights or financial compensation should not be a prerequisite to reconciliation. If your spouse demands concessions before reconciliation, you should consult an attorney. We can explain and help you protect your rights whether you divorce or not. Our firm understands that not all divorces end in divorce.
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