As a New York divorce attorney and psychologically-trained mediator, I
hear from a lot of spouses who want a divorce because they have realized
they have been living the horrors of being married to a narcissist or
But there are other personality and mood disorders affecting marriages
today. These include depression and anxiety.
As a medical professional and divorce attorney, I see all of these mental
health issues infecting the fabric of many marriages. Some of these disorders
are less obvious than others, but they disrupt marriages just as profoundly.
A husband met with me recently to discuss divorcing his wife. He is a professional
tennis player and his wife an architect. They have two children, 2 and
4 years old.
He explained that for the past year his wife has been sleeping a lot and
not paying much attention to their children or him. She has barely managed
to maintain her job, and took a lot more sick days than usual. He was
thinking she was lazy. He has been caring for the children, doing most
of the nurturing. He cooks all their meals, takes them to extracurricular
activities and has kept them busy with outings this summer.
His wife was on edge all the time, irritable and angry. She had become
withdrawn, and was also drinking a shot of vodka every day. Her appetite
was poor, and she wasn’t interested in sex. He urged her to see
a therapist but she refused.
He said he still loved her but, he felt the only way to protect his children
and himself from this dysfunction was to get a divorce.
Hearing his story, I could tell from the symptoms he described that his
wife was depressed. The husband was unaware she was depressed, but knew
something was very wrong.
It is sad when mood disorders are ignored and not treated. In addition
to therapy, there are many medications that make an enormous difference
to people who are anxious and/or depressed.
I have treated many depressed patients while working in medical offices,
and I recognize them in my legal practice. If the symptoms were acknowledged,
it might be possible to seek treatment and save the marriage.
After discussing depression with him, he wanted to approach this divorce
with compassion. He wanted to see if treatment was possible but still
felt a divorce might be necessary. I explained my mediation program and
that this process would either help him get divorced, or help him save
his marriage. He was open to seeing how mediation might help. I suggested
I would speak with his wife to explain he wanted a divorce and invite
her to a mediation session to discuss moving forward.
The husband agreed. I then I met with him and his wife. There were lots
of tears, denial and blame, but she agreed she was in a lot of emotional
pain and the marriage was over.
We have started mediation meetings and are making some progress. She has
opened up more in the last month and is more responsive to seeing a therapist
after my discussing depression with her. Last week she decided to see
one of the psychiatrists that works on my team. I am hopeful she will
receive the help she needs.
Don’t suffer in silence. If you or your spouse are dealing with unexplained
behavioral issues in your marriage, there is help.
My mediation process has a unique psychological component. Unlike other
divorce attorneys, because of my medical background, I can identify and
address mood and personality disorders affecting the marriage, and provide
useful tools to help you move through the divorce process more effectively
and with less pain.
My highly successful mediation process will help you divorce with a targeted
psychological approach, if needed, combined with solid legal strategy
to get you the best possible settlement.
Don’t hesitate to call me if you need help.
All our FREE 1 HOUR CONSULTATIONS are
still available virtually.
I look forward to speaking with you.
Call New York Divorce Attorney Lois Brenner now to schedule your free consultation.