What do you do when you are in an unsafe marriage, but your religious beliefs prevent you from getting a divorce? This painful situation is one that many people have found themselves in, and there is no easy answer on how to resolve it. If you or someone you know feels stuck between their beliefs and wanting to escape an unsafe marriage, our Las Vegas divorce lawyers recommend taking the following steps:
- Always Put Your Own Safety First
As the name implies, an unsafe marriage is one where one or both of the spouses feel like they are in danger being around their partner. A marriage can become unsafe because of abuse (physical, verbal, or emotional), reckless behavior on the part of one of the spouses—such as heavy drinking or drug use, or any other factors that results in one spouse believing that staying around their partner puts them, or their children, at risk.
Whether or not your religion forbids divorce, the first thing anyone in an unsafe marital situation needs to do is take steps to protect their own safety. Abusive or self-destructive partners will often use feelings of guilt to convince their significant other to stay with them, including guilt over the violation of the religious sanctity of marriage. If you feel you are unsafe and your spouse will not change their dangerous behavior, then ensuring your own safety by creating a physical separation between the two of you should be your first priority.
- Consult with Religious Authorities in Your Life
When people are having troubles with their marriage, religious authorities such as priests, rabbis, and imams can provide counseling, religious advice, and a sympathetic ear. Keeping in mind that your own safety comes first, consult with your personal religious leader about the issues in your marriage and how you fear for your safety. Ideally, you and your spouse will be able to work with your religious counselor to resolve your issues, or to at least reduce the tension between the two of you while you work out how your separation will play out. If not, a spiritual advisor can also provide you with moral support through a troubling time, and even advise you on how to put a functional end to your marriage without violating your religious beliefs.
- Make Your Decision on What Is Best for You
At the end of the day, no one should be forced to return to a marriage that is unsafe and puts them in danger. If there is no way for your marriage to be made safe and healthy for both partners, then there is no shame in ending the relationship and moving on, whether a particular religious authority agrees or not. Even if you do not officially divorce, it is your right to end an unsafe relationship without being made to feel that you have failed in your religious responsibilities.
Need more advice on how to reconcile religion and your need for a divorce? Contact the McFarling Law Group today at 702-565-4335.