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Issues that may mean you're at risk for divorce

When you got married, you no doubt hoped your union would last a lifetime. Perhaps 10 or 20 (or more) years later, several children and maybe a move from one house to another a time or two, and you're just not so sure anymore. There are many issues that can crop up in a marriage that place a strain on the relationship.

If you've been raising children for a decade or more, you've likely already overcome challenges, as parents and as spouses. As for the latter, there are several reasons people who get divorced often cite as causal factors in the breakdowns of their relationships. If you've been experiencing one or more of these issues, it might signal trouble. If that's the case, it pays to determine where to seek support, especially if divorce occurs.

Differences that didn't seem like a big deal at first

Marital relationships go through all kinds of phases, from the honeymoon stage to parenting and beyond. The following list shows various issues that you might not have thought would hurt your marriage but wound up driving a wedge between you and your spouse:

You don't share a faith: In a modern world of inclusiveness, you might not have thought that having a different faith background from your spouse would, in any way, cause problems in your marriage. Statistics show, however, that spouses who are of different faiths do not report happiness in their relationships as often as couples who share the same faith.

You feel like you're on your own: From time to time, most couples need some extra helping hands in life. If you and your spouse don't have any extended family support, it can place a great strain on your marriage.

You didn't know enough ahead of time: Many couples go through some type of pre-marital counseling program. However, if such education merely gives you a brief overview of how to determine if your and your spouse are compatible rather than tackle difficult topics and make recommendations for the great number of situations that may arise that are difficult to handle, then you may not be adequately prepared to take on the responsibilities of marriage.

Your health has declined: It is natural for spouses to take care of one another in sickness and in health. If your adverse health condition has prompted your spouse to pull away from you, or he or she has said it's too difficult to handle, you may be one of many couples who gets divorced because of the burden illness can place on a relationship.

Just as there are support networks for people seeking marriage counseling, you can also explore support options that are available to help you protect your interests if you or your spouse file for divorce.

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