I sometimes hear from people who just aren't sure if they are truly ready to walk away from their spouse and their marriage. Sometimes, they themselves are the ones who initiated the separation, divorce, or thoughts of giving up. Other times, they are responding to (and are at the mercy of) a spouse who is no longer happy or invested in the marriage.

Whatever the reason for the uncertainty, I often hear comments like: “my husband and I decided to separate for 6 months and then decide if we wanted to proceed on to divorce. I have to admit that the separation did not go well. We didn't make any progress and we still aren't happy as a couple. It appears that the logical thing to do would be to go ahead and end the marriage. We did try, but it doesn't appear that we have succeeded in rebuilding our marriage. My husband agrees that divorcing is probably the best thing to do. But while my head can look at these facts and determine that ending my marriage probably makes the most logical sense, my heart is not following along. Somewhere deep inside of me, I worry that I might still love my husband and that maybe there's some spark of connection left that hasn't completely gone out. Am I silly to feel this way? What happens when you don't know if you're ready to end your marriage, but you have no idea how to save it or even if there is anything left to save?”

I have to disclose that I probably am not the most objective person to answer these questions. I was on the verge of divorce and my husband had virtually walked away from my marriage when I decided that I should listen to that little voice of indecision and follow my heart. So I'm probably not the person who is going to tell you to just quash that little voice and walk away from your marriage. I firmly believe (and it's my experience) that the little voice of doubt that you are hearing is there for a very valid and important reason. (There is a lot more about that (and the full story here.) I will explain why below.

People Who End Their Marriages In A Healthy And Final Way Generally Do Not Have Doubts: Believe it or not, there are people who know for sure that their marriage is completely over and who are very willing and able to walk away from it with a clear conscience. This is because they know in their heart that they have done everything in their power to save their marriage but, in the end, it just wasn't possible. And the result is two people who are just at the natural end of their relationship. They aren't indecisive. Or angry. Or feeling heavy in their hearts.

And these are generally the couples who are able to make a clean and healthy break. They are able to wish their ex-spouse well. And when they go on to their next relationship or marriage, they're not carrying baggage, bitterness, or disappointment because they had closure knowing that the end was completely mutual and complete. However, these couples generally do not scour the internet looking for information about what to do when they're not sure if they can walk away from their marriage.

If You're Unsure Whether You're Ready To End Your Marriage, Then That's A Good Indication That The Marriage Is Not Over For You: Again, I'm not the most objective person to write about this topic. I'm sure there are some who would tell you to get over it and move on. I'm not one of those people because I know how it feels to have doubts nagging at you because you aren't ready to throw years of love right down the drain. Your spouse is the person who you vowed to love, honor and cherish til death do you part. It's understandable to have some hesitation at turning your back on that.

When I was going through this, I used to lay awake at night with the terrifying thoughts of “what if I'm wrong and I end my marriage and regret it for the rest of my life? What if walk away from my soul mate and I never get him back again and never find another one?” There were friends who told me that I was being overly dramatic and maybe I was. But I didn't want to see myself as one of those young women on their second marriage who was already living with shattered dreams and bitterness. And I'm glad I was able to admit that to myself because it made a huge difference in the outcome of my marriage and my life. (That story is here.)

If You're Having Doubts About Whether You're Ready To Leave Your Marriage, As Yourself If You're Already Done Everything In Your Power To Save It: Many times, I think we have indecision about leaving our marriage for two possible reasons. The first is that pure and simple, we still have loving feelings for our spouse. For whatever reason, the feelings are still there, even if it doesn't make sense, is not convenient, or isn't entirely reciprocated. We can't always deny this, even if we'd like to because the heart knows what it knows.

Second, a lot of times we have doubts because we know deep down that there have things we haven’t done or words we haven't said out of fear of rejection, fear of embarrassment, or fear that our words just won't work. If either of these is the case for you, then perhaps you owe it to yourself to see this through to the end to make sure that you aren't walking away from your marriage prematurely.

One final point, people who are truly ready to walk away from their marriages with a decisive heart that is at peace aren't generally searching on the internet for information on this topic. The fact that you are may tell you that you still have indecision that you may still want to examine and deal with before you're truly ready to walk away. And who knows? If your indecision ends up saving the marriage that you are still invested in and still want, then thank goodness for that indecision.

There was a time that I thought my marriage was truly at its unnatural end. My husband had totally checked out and would not lift a finger to help me reconcile the marriage. I knew that, at least from my end, it was not yet time to call it quits. Thankfully, even though I had doubts, I decided to try one last thing and approach it from another angle and this eventually worked. You can read my story on my blog at http://isavedmymarriage.com/

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