This is the first article in the divorce series. Divorce is a very serious topic and not to be taken lightly. There are many implications concerning divorce that must be considered. The decision to get divorced is ultimately a selfish one and one that you must make depending on a myriad of factors. I have spoken with many men regarding their own divorce as well as counseled men on deciding if they should get a divorce. You must make the decision if you will get a divorce and an informed decision is always the best one. This article is concerned with the considerations leading to getting a divorce. I understand every situation is different but I will try my best to take as many factors in as I can.
This isn’t legal advice. I’m not a lawyer and I don’t play one on TV. I’m a guy who has been through the ringer in California Family Court, made a shit ton of mistakes, and came out the other side mostly intact. My situation may have nothing to do with yours or maybe there will be some similarities. Glean what you can and if you have other specific questions email them to me at [email protected]
Divorce Is Ugly
Things get ugly in a divorce real fast. She has the courts on her side and will try to take “what she deserves”. Depending on the female “what she deserves” maybe everything. Like suicide, don’t reach for a permanent solution
I believe making the most informed decision is the best decision. Weigh your options first and that will help to make the best decision. I’ll give some background knowledge about divorce and some general suggestions before I get more specific.
Stats On Divorce
It’s “common knowledge” that 50% of marriages end in divorce, right? But where do those numbers come from? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for whatever reason tally the numbers for divorce and marriage in the United States. As I was digging into the numbers there are a variety of states absent from the divorce tally, namely California, Indiana, sometimes Hawaii, Minnesota, and Louisiana. I didn’t care enough to check why, just thought this was odd. The latest stats (2016) show a nationwide marriage rate of 6.9 per 1000 people and divorce of 3.2 per 1000 people, thus the approximate 50% figure. Many states, like California, have a much higher divorce rate.
Reasons For Divorce
According to marriage.com here are the top 10 reasons for divorce…
- Lack of communication
- Constant arguing
- Weight gain
- Unrealistic expectations
- Lack of intimacy
- Lack of equality
- Not being prepared for marriage
Any of these on their own seems to make sense as a marriage ender. Whatever your reason for contemplating divorce, make sure you have thought long and hard about the reasons why. As I stated earlier, divorce is a selfish decision, but not one to make hastily. If you have children with your spouse this can be an even tougher decision. I struggled with it for quite a while before I finally had enough.
“Listen” To Her Actions
Actions speak louder than words, and this cuts both ways. Pay attention to her actions more than the whim of her emotional rants. I cannot stress this enough; her actions are far more consistent than her words.
It’s absolutely no secret that men have an uphill battle in family court. Your once demure angel will turn into a raging devil while going through a divorce, so as a man you must take all steps necessary to prevent your almost inevitable court order raping. For you to have a chance at a fair deal, you MUST be prepared and be two steps ahead of her. As painful as it might be, talk with an attorney. Get specific information on your specific situation. Most competent attorneys start in the $250/hr range and are worth every penny. While we are on the topic of lawyers, make sure you find a highly respected attorney who has experience and a good reputation in the community. Consult with this attorney early as every state has their own methods for navigating divorces. Both of my attorneys were female, they were ruthless and wonderful.
But I might be getting ahead of myself…
Steps To Take NOW
So, what if you want to give it one last chance before you go the way of the divorce. What should you do? Couples counseling? Two words on that, “Fuck No”. IF you need to get your shit in order and talk to someone, I recommend your male friends and family first. Followed by your pet rock, then strangers on the internet, after that, the homeless guy on the freeway off-ramp, and then a counselor (individually). I’m sure there are some good ones out there, however most are interested in propagating the same feminist trope they were fed while in university. No thanks. Talking is good but action is concrete, tangible, with real results. Keep this in mind: The rate of therapists divorce is “well above” the average for other occupations.
If this is a new term to you, you must start reading. “Dread game” is more of a lifestyle than a specific tool for short-term gain. Basically, dread game is inadvertently/indirectly letting her know you have other options. You don’t NEED her, you WANT her. Which, as any woman reading this would completely agree: a man who WANTS you is far sexier than a man who NEEDS you.
As I have said many times the average woman has far more social acuity than the average man does. She knows if other women desire you, and when other women do her attraction grows. This is called a pre-selection bias. In other words, the more other people demonstrate the desire of something, the higher the perceived value. From those damn Furby’s in the 90’s, to some paint splatters, perceived value is what it’s about. This can work either for you or against you. If your wife knows no one else is interested in you, her interest will wane. However, if other women are demonstrating an interest in you, her attraction grows.
If you want to have a chance at reigniting the spark, here is a great place to start. Btw, I’m assuming some kind of dead bedroom situation going on here.
Dread Game 101
Level 1 – Tests
Learn to recognize and begin to pass Congruence, Compliance, Comfort and shit tests – Read What Women Want When They Test Men – Bruce Bryans. Understand that all of these tests are pass/fail. If you fail enough she will lose respect and attraction for you.
Congruence Tests – These tests usually come first – they are a test by your woman so see if your “inner self” is the same as your “external self”. She will try to prove that you really are dedicated to your beliefs. For example, she may storm out dramatically during an argument expecting you to chase after her – thus testing your resolve.
Compliance Tests – These can be closely related to congruence tests and are all about the situation in which the request is made. She is trying to see if you will comply with her desire. Things to watch out for are twofold, her tone/demeanor when requesting and how outrageous the request itself is. For example, asking you to pick up something on a high shelf while you are already cooking together is fine, asking for you to stop working on the car so you can pour her a drink is not.
Shit Tests – If there is one type of testing that has been written on extensively it’s shit tests. These are her constantly testing your worth in relation to yours. There is a myriad of articles all over the internet talking about shit tests but in general she is trying to ascertain how stable you are, how much she can rely on you, and to make sure you won’t bend to her every emotional change. This is always a chance for you to flip the script on here and flirt right back.
Her: “Are you going to sit there and play video games all day?”
Him: “Hell yea, if I get good enough I’ll quit my day job!”
Her question and premise are faulty from the start so have some fun with her. You will disarm her and have a great time with the push/pull.
Comfort Tests – These come later, especially if you are now recognizing and passing the above three tests. These tests can sound like shit tests but have a completely different meaning to her. What she is recognizing is that your social value is increasing or surpassing hers. She begins to question if she is good enough for you and is beginning to fear for the relationship. These tests come in the form of insecurities on her part, for example, she may say you aren’t spending enough time with her recently since you’ve gotten a promotion at work. Recognize this is not an attempt to control you. She is demonstrating that she values the relationship and needs more time with you. These tests are very important to maintaining the relationship.
Level 2 – Develop and Execute Self-Improvement Plan
Do a real analysis of all aspects of your life – Read Mindful Attraction Plan Athol Kay.
Before you can do any meaningful improvement, you have to take inventory and know what you are doing correctly as well as what needs to be improved on. I know at every level here I’m recommending a book to read, however if you only read one read this one. Athol gives solid steps and advice to help you transform into the best version of yourself.
Level 3 – Get An Outside Life
Find interests that aren’t tied to your wife – ie things you can do on your own or with male friends. Read some good fiction – something that interests you.
Common ground with your wife is very desirable, however, many men have lost their own identity and have few if any interests apart from their wife. You need to start doing things you enjoy that are separate from your wife. Keep in mind you still need to balance your responsibilities. You shouldn’t leave hear with the children 5 nights a week so you can play poker with the guys. However, one night a week would be a good starting place. If she gives pushback, do not relent. Instead, plan a time or suggest she spend time with her girlfriends.
Level 4 – Conditional Availability
The most valuable thing you can give to a woman is your time. Be available to her only when she isn’t being a total bitch. Read Way of the Superior Man by David Deida
At this state, you have started improving. You are seeing her tests for what they are and are passing them with flying colors. Your time is also more valuable, you have some hobbies and outside interests. Condition your availability to her based on how she treats you. I don’t mean storm out if she is rude, just decline to interact with her until she is behaving better. If you have a particularly emotional woman this level will be tough. Some women love the conflict and as stated earlier some push/pull is good. However, being rude and disrespectful should not be tolerated. If you can muster it, telling her that her tone isn’t acceptable and not to talk to you that way (said in a stern voice) is usually sufficient. I also bet that you rarely if ever have done this in the past. Show her your boundaries and make them rock solid. Word of caution, this won’t work if you get over emotional yourself. Yelling at her to not talk to you in that manner isn’t very effective.
Level 5 – Upgrade Your Wardrobe
Now that you have been eating right, working out, and getting some hobbies, dress the part. Always try to make a great impression with your clothes. Read TheEssentialMan.
Wearing the costume affects your behavior. There is something very attractive about a well-dressed man or woman. When was the last time you made a concerted effort to look good every day? That’s exactly why this level is here.
At this point, you have been working on yourself. This is MUCH needed as you have been letting yourself slide for the years of your marriage. At this point if there is a chance to salvage the relationship you should start to see a difference in your wife. However, this is not a quick nor easy fix. Expect the first 5 levels to take anywhere from 5 – 15 months of hard work, depending on how long you have been slacking. You will need to stay dedicated. Remember the reason you are doing this is NOT FOR HER. You have been slacking off for how many years? You OWE it to yourself to improve yourself.
Be the best you can be but do it for the man in the mirror. Only then will it be genuine. I’ll list the other levels but progress past level 5 means the relationship is complete shit and you are so far gone in her eyes. Or she has already moved onto another guy. I NEVER condone cheating, I would not want her to do it, therefore I would hold myself to that same standard. If you are at the point of cheating, just do yourself the favor and end the relationship and file for divorce.
Level 6 – Study pick up artistry
Level 7 – Learn how to talk to other women
Level 8 – Show wife you can talk with other women
Level 9 – A or B option time
Level 10 – Pull the trigger
To summarize, my 5 recommendations to contemplate before divorce are:
- No Couples Counseling!!
- Dread Game Steps 1-5
- Don’t Cheat
- Consult An Attorney
- Listen To Her Actions, Not Her Words
In Part Two, I’ll discuss the divorce process itself and provide specific recommendations and advice for navigating that portion.