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How Can I Prepare Myself for Divorce with a High-Conflict Spouse? 

Posted on in Divorce

fort worth divorce lawyerWhile divorce is never easy, for people married to high-conflict partners, the very prospect of divorce can keep people in unhappy marriages far longer than they wish. This is because people who have certain personality disorders or characteristics often escalate already difficult situations into intense conflict, making the situations even more difficult to manage. Sometimes the escalation is a deliberate effort to keep a spouse from leaving. If you are hoping to divorce your high-conflict spouse, it is important to prepare yourself for a wide range of responses and to have the help of a Texas divorce attorney at your side. 

Common Divorce Scenarios Involving High-Conflict Personalities

One of the most challenging aspects of a relationship with a high-conflict partner is that bad attention is often better than no attention. The idea of the relationship ending may trigger deep-seated fears of abandonment, which can manifest as frightening outbursts of anger or attempts to control the partner trying to leave. Other common divorce scenarios involving high-conflict personalities include: 

  • False accusations of abuse or neglect

  • Self-harm or threats of self-harm

  • Destroying marital property

  • Recklessly spending marital money

  • Increased risk of domestic violence

  • Angry or violent outbursts

  • Attempts to involve friends and family in the divorce

  • Attempts to pursue sole custody of children

  • Attempts to alienate children from their parent 

  • Efforts to escalate or continue conflict, despite the other spouse’s refusal to engage

Every person is different, so it can be difficult to know what kind of behavior to anticipate. However, you know your spouse well, and this is one situation in which it is better not to give the benefit of the doubt. Prepare yourself for the worst possible behavior and hope for the best. 

What if My Marriage Involved Domestic Violence?

If you or your children are at imminent risk of family violence, take action right away. You can contact a national domestic violence hotline to find resources to support you during this challenging time. Furthermore, domestic violence can be grounds for divorce in Texas in the form of “cruelty,” and can affect the outcome of a divorce in terms of child custody and property settlement. Your divorce may be fast-tracked (the 60-day waiting period may be waived), and you may be able to get an emergency protective order requiring your spouse to stay away from you. 

Contact a Fort Worth, TX Divorce Lawyer for a Free Consultation

Getting divorced from someone with a high-conflict personality can be an intimidating experience, but you do not have to go through it alone. Get help from an experienced team of Fort Worth divorce attorneys by calling the law firm of Hatton & Hatton, PLLC today at 817-349-8120. We offer free, confidential consultations and will work with you to explore your options. 




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