Before I jump right into the suprising reasons why the relationship you have with your spouse is your most important human relationship, let me tell you what happened.
My husband/law partner and I were recently at a hearing where we were representing Dad in a child custody dispute as Dad’s divorce lawyers.
Unlike Mom, Dad had been a wonderful father to his children and for many reasons should be been given sole custody of the children.
We had prepared for hours and hours, perhaps over 100 hours of time went into showing the Judge why Dad should win sole custody.
When we walked into the courtroom for the custody battle, the Judge greeted us a bit coldly, and then in a big giggly smile greeted our opposing counsel, the lawyer for Mom.
It was immediately apparent to us that the relationship between that lawyer and this particular judge was going to get in the way of the right outcome for the children.
In other words, since the judge was better friends with the other lawyer, the kids lives were not going to be properly set up.
Instead of presenting a trial, we were all but forced to settle the case, despite being on the right side of justice for the kids.
Why Should You Care?
This means that we have a legal system here in Texas that gives the District Court Judges profound power over people’s lives. And, the power is not always employed in a just and proper manner.
Judges are people and people tend to favor their friends even if they are supposed to be able to employ blind justice and judgement.
But, there is never a time when this deficieny in legal process matters so much as in the context of family law, except perhaps in criminal cases.
Your spouse owns half of your wealth, and can set you up to lose yours.
If your spouse cleverly plans it through a lawyer, your spouse has, here in Texas the power to take away or least to try to take away your fundamental rights to be a parent who is regularly in your children’s lives.
Your spouse has the ability to impact how your children view you.
If you don’t have children, your spouse still has the ability to divorce you and file numerous types of lawsuits against you, and thereby testify about your most personal details in public court.
People Think That Judges Will Protect Them. They Are Often Wrong
Judges are overbooked and have heard thousands of divorce cases. They will not understand your divorce the way that you do, and they may not even try to or care that much. They are not your protector.
Why Your Relationship With Your Spouse Matters No Matter What
Because a spouse is in a position, more so than any other person, to impact your entire life, legally, the relationship you have with your spouse should be treated with a great deal of regard.
Even if you are not going to stay married to your spouse, your approach to ending the relationship must be done thoughtfully, and with empathy for your spouse.
You should treat your spouse how you want to be treated, even if you are going to be divorced from them at any point in the future.
If it is at all possible, you should stay with your spouse and support them through thick and thin. This way, your lives are less likely to ever end up outside of the home, on divorce display, and in the hands of strangers that cannot possibly “get it” like you do.