How to Avoid Common Pitfalls of Second Marriages
Sixty percent of second marriages will end in divorce, according to statistics presented by the National Stepfamily Resource Center. While it’s true that second marriages present unique challenges, don’t consider your love doomed just yet. We have some tips that will help you keep your second marriage healthy.
It’s important to first consider that this gloomy statistic isn’t merely related to the fact that it is marriage number two.
“There is more at play that puts these couples at high risk for divorce,” says California divorce attorney John Griffith. “It’s that no one goes into a first marriage planning for it to end in divorce. You want to believe it will last a lifetime, so you make forever decisions. You have children, buy a home together and put your career on hold or forgo school to raise a family. When those forever plans dissipate, things get complicated. Second marriages aren’t necessarily doomed, some are just complicated.”
On top of all of complicated details, you have experienced a failed marriage. You may be jaded. And that’s where the fight to protect your second marriage starts.
Tips For Making Your Second Marriage Last
- Ask yourself what went wrong the first time- As jaded as you may be, you have to identify went wrong in your first marriage, and take responsibility for your part. What are you going to do to avoid past mistakes? Stop drinking? Seek financial advisement for your poor spending habits? Hold your spouse accountable?
- Be prepared- A second marriage isn’t all rainbows and butterflies for remarried and blended families. Expect some loyalty issues and tension during holidays, birthdays, and marriages of adult children. It’s nothing you can’t get through, especially when you are prepared to take it in stride.
- Sign a prenuptial agreement –Prenuptial agreements are signed prior to marriage and can be used to protect your assets and interests in the case of divorce. Already married? No worries. Postnuptial agreements are entered into following marriage and provide similar protection.
- Read The 5 Love Languages– Communication breakdown has ended many relationships. The 5 Love Languages is a book written by relationship counselor Dr. Gary Chapman who claims there are five universal love languages. As much as you may think you are communicating your love and commitment to your spouse, if you aren’t speaking their love language, they may not see or feel it, according to Chapman. Discover your love language and your spouse’s by taking this free quiz.
- Take breaks- Your children are important, but so is the health of your marriage. Try to set aside time for date nights or a couples vacation so you can enjoy your spouse – guilt free.
- Talk to a marriage counselor – Marriage counselors aren’t just for broken relationships. Regular counseling can help keep communication lines clear and the relationship on track.
“I know plenty of couples in healthy relationships who go to periodic counseling sessions to keep their relationship healthy,” says Griffith.
- Be steadfast- Even lasting first marriages aren’t immune to struggles that must be fought through. Make up your mind now that you will remain steadfast through minor struggles in this relationship.
No one wants to see a first, second or third marriage end in divorce. We are here to help couples protect their assets through carefully written agreements, and mediation. We are also experienced in navigating the complexity of divorce when a marriage has run its course. Call today to speak with an experienced Encinitas divorce attorney.