January is ‘Divorce Month’

So many couples hold on through the holidays in the hope that the magic of those special shared moments will save their marriage.  They hold on for the kids and they hold on as a test to see whether the holidays can resuscitate their relationship or confirm the notion that they can’t take another year in this marriage.  According to MyDivorcePapers.com, “It is estimated that each January the rate of people filing for divorce goes up 50% higher than any other time of the year. The January divorce month has been so established in the legal community that professionals have pin-pointed the day divorce peaks. D-Day, as it has been dubbed, is the first day children return to school from winter break.”

Psychology Today reported, [f]amous divorce lawyer Raoul Felder said that his schedule is so jammed with clients seeking dissolutions of their marriages in January that he has to schedule late into the evening. Lawyer Sue Moss likewise said, “It’s like tax season for us…December is dead, and then as soon as the ball drops, the phone starts ringing and it doesn’t stop.” Bernard Rothman, counsel to Sankel, Skurman & McCartin LLP in New York, said, “Generally the calls fall off just before Thanksgiving and pick up again on January 2.” Chicago attorney and author Jeffrey Leving said that the Legal Services Commission recognizes January and February as the busiest months for divorce, noting that “couples have false expectations. They think miracles will happen during the holidays, especially when children are involved.”

The Huffington Post asked the question, January: More Divorces Than Any Other Month?  One reason that couples wait until January to initiate their divorce is so that they can keep the family unit together through the holidays.  Many couples assess their marriage as part of their “year-end reflections and resolutions” and if it’s still not working out, then it’s time to move on.  “The holidays are also a time when emotions run high and if you are unhappy or angry in your marriage, the holidays may push those feelings to the breaking point.”

“[I]t’s probably good for those who choose to end their marriages in January to know that they’re not alone,” but it’s important to make the decision and begin the process when it is psychologically the best time for you.  “[T]he ‘best’ time is when they know they’ve done everything they could have done to make it work.”