We need to talk: How to discuss divorce like adults

Getting a divorce can be an emotional experience.

Even if you haven’t been happy in a relationship for a while, bringing up the topic of legally splitting up can feel overwhelming — even if it’s a relatively common experience.

As of 2018, about 2.6 million Canadians identified as divorced, according to data. The age of people who are divorced or separated has been increasing, too, Statistics Canada reports, especially for individuals 50 and over. About one in five adults in their late 50s had split from their partner as of 2011.

So how can you talk about divorce and best handle it? First step, be honest with your partner, said Toronto-based divorce lawyer Paul Riley.

“If you are not happy in the relationship and counselling is not an option you desire to engage in, let your partner know,” Riley said.

“Staying in a bad marriage is not doing you or your partner or your children any favours.”

How to talk divorce

Once you’ve addressed your desire to divorce from your partner, you need to sort out the logistics.

Riley said some key things to consider when dealing with divorce include where will your children live (if you have any), who will move out and who will live where, and who will take over primary ownership of any pets.

There are also the financial aspects, he said.

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