Would you Divorce your Spouse Because of their Mental Illness

This morning, I stumbled across an interesting story from India concerning a husband that is attempting to divorce his wife of 14 years because she suffers from obsessive compulsive disorder.

The article in question reported on how the man in question has claimed that whilst he was aware of his wife’s condition before they married, but had noticed that her behaviour had grown progressively worse over time, particularly following the birth of their daughter in 2000.

Whilst reading, I was reminded of a situation my friend had found himself in only last year – his wife had become acutely depressed following the death of her mother and he, following numerous attempts to help her, confided in me over a drink, stating that he was considering divorce.

He had not arrived at this decision lightly. His wife had been suffering from the condition for several months and he had persistently requested that she seek help. He still loved her, he informed me, but was finding it difficult to deal with her negative outlook and the fact that she was seemingly unable to communicate effectively any more. Ultimately, he claimed, her behaviour was affecting him to such an extent that he was certain that he too would soon be suffering from depression.

Fortunately, this story had a happy ending. My friend informed his wife of the fact that he was considering divorce and this served as the catalyst she so clearly needed. She later visited her doctor and attended several sessions of cognitive therapy. She is now, my friend informs me, back to her happy go lucky self.

Whilst my friend and his wife were able to overcome their problems, though, many spouses will lack the patience, resilience and willpower required to ensure that their marriage survives such problems.

That is not to suggest that it is the healthy partner that will be to blame for any divorce that comes about because of their spouse’s mental illness. A very small minority of husbands or wives will leave their partner before the going gets tough. The majority will in fact selflessly support their partners for months, even years, and it is only when they start to believe that the situation is beyond repair that they consider divorce. In my experience, in fact, it is actually a partner refusing to seek help for their condition that causes the breakdown of a marriage and not the other partner’s intolerance.

It is an unfortunate fact that one spouse’s mental illness is all too capable of driving a wedge between a married couple and, all in all, I can only recommend that a spouse that suffers from a mental illness visit their doctor and seeks help as soon as possible. Your condition will only worsen if your partner files for a divorce so take action now, before it’s too late.

The Divorce Blogger writes for Quickie Divorce . For more articles visit the Quickie Divorce Blog .