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Tips for Talking to Someone About an Impending Divorce

What should -- or shouldn't -- a thoughtful friend say?

by Gretchen Rubin  |  2902 views  |  1 comment  |        Rate this now! 

3.) Assume that you know who is “right” or “wrong.” It’s impossible, from the outside, to understand someone else’s relationship. “Technically, I left my husband,” a friend told me, “but I thought he was the one who abandoned our marriage. I didn’t appreciate being viewed as the one who wasn’t willing to do any work to keep it going.”

4.) Insist on being given a reason. People can’t always sum up their reasons neatly, and they may want to keep their reasons private. Don’t probe for explanations or pry for details.

What are some other things to say -- or not to say? What am I overlooking?


About the Author

In her blog, The Happiness Project (, Gretchen Rubin recounts her daily adventures as she test-drives the wisdom of the ages and current scientific research about how to be happier.

Read more by Gretchen Rubin

1 comment so far...

  • When a close friend of mine got divorced, our relationship became awkward and I wasn't sure what to say. One day I just turned to him and told him how awkward I was feeling. He confessed his awkwardness too. We then had a fantastic conversation about how his divorce affected our friendship. After that all the awkwardness was gone and I was able to be a big emotional support to him through the rest of the process.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Sandra Tayler on 5th July 2008