Divorce can be a lengthy process, especially when your spouse refuses to complete the divorce. You may be done with the marriage but your ex obviously has some problems letting go. After all, finalizing the divorce is a strong signal that there is no going back. As frustrating as it may be for you, keep the following in mind.
Your Ex is Still Hurt
If you initiated the divorce, your ex may still be hurt that you left. They may be trying to hold on to whatever connection there may be with you. As much as they may need a therapist to work with them on this final step, recommending someone for them to talk to may be viewed as a harsh suggestion on your part. Instead, work with your own therapist to work out your own frustrations with your ex. Keep your feelings on your side of the street.
Your Ex May Be Scared of Being Single
Being single can be daunting, especially after years of being married. Your ex may have enjoyed the status of being married, and that may have helped them to feel wanted. Now, the prospect of being single is scary and toughing it out on the dating scene can be depressing. Your ex could be both frightened and depressed, both of which may explain their reluctance to sign the dotted line. Be encouraging when you can. Assure your ex in small ways that they will find someone again.
Your Ex May Still Try To Connect With You Through Legal Proceedings
Yes. This happens. Your ex may only get to see you when entangled in legal conflict. Some may cause the conflict to last longer than it should. This is another way your ex is having a difficult time letting go. Your ex may delay the process by not handing over paperwork necessary to finish the process. If you have no assets to divide, this is a sure sign that your ex is still trying to connect with you. It's best for you to consult with your attorney to find the best way to move the divorce along. Extending the process will only make it more painful for your ex.
Your Ex May Be Afraid To Tell The Kids
An ex who still tells the kids that "mommy and daddy are still married" when a divorce is clearly on the horizon is having difficulty letting go of the marriage. Your children will not be fooled. They understand, especially if the parents are already living in separate homes, that mommy and daddy are no longer together. They will also remember and look back on their parent as being rejected by another parent. Assure your children that no one was at fault (especially them!) and that mommy and daddy will continue to love them.
All in all, when your ex is reluctant to sign the dotted line, it could be for any of these reasons and many more. Be encouraging. Be kind. And remember, eventually they will need to let you and the marriage go!