A spouse struggling with mental health issues can complicate a divorce. If you find yourself in this position in Tennessee, you should be aware of how to handle the situation to ensure that your divorce can move forward, and you can start your new life as a single individual.
The effect of divorce on mental health
The process of divorce can create strain and tension. For someone who is already struggling with mental health issues, a divorce can act as a trigger for intense emotions. The person might then act desperately, fearing what is happening to their life. Their reaction can range from doing whatever it takes to stop the divorce to taking extreme actions to punish their spouse for the divorce, including lying about situations that can impact their spouse legally and emotionally. In a custody battle, for example, someone with mental health issues might accuse their spouse of things that can lead to limited visits with their child or even arrest.
Preparing for divorce
When you are dealing with a spouse with mental health issues, you need to prepare yourself for the divorce process by taking measures to specifically address concerns relating to this. Some of the things you can do include:
- Limiting interactions to public places or where a witness is present
- Keeping records of all interactions that speak to the behavior and of past incidents or interactions that are evidence of this pattern
- Gathering a divorce team that can guide and support you through the process
- Enlisting a mental health professional who can help you with your concerns and fears about the situation
In many cases, the signs of mental health issues were there even before the relationship fell apart. You may have overlooked them, or triggers may not have been present to cause the symptoms to manifest. If you recognize that this might be a factor in your divorce, it is best to address it even before the process starts to prepare for what is to come.