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The holiday season is stressful, but does it end marriages?

The holiday season can be a trying time for families, even when they get along. The stress of decorations, gifts, traveling between homes, visiting relatives, having guests in your home and other responsibilities can be overwhelming.

This may be part of the reason why there is an uptick in divorces in the months following the holidays. When unhappy spouses are forced to spend time with families they don't get along with or there is financial stress that overwhelms a marriage, it's easy to see why Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah and other major holidays add so much strain that a marriage may break.

The holidays might be the final test for your marriage

Something to keep in mind is that the holidays might be something like a final test for your relationship. If the holidays go very well, then you may see improvements and be able to reconcile or bring your family together stronger than ever.

On the other hand, if one spouse doesn't put effort into the responsibilities of the season or another finds themselves at odds with everything going on, they may say that it's finally time to call it quits and ask the other for a divorce.

Do the holidays really cause more divorces?

Not necessarily. Although the holidays can put strain on relationships and show couples that they shouldn't be together, it's more likely that the couples have had trouble for quite some time before coming to the realization that they need to separate or divorce. The stress of seeing each other's families or working through the holidays may just give them the extra push to finally decide if they want to remain in their marriages.

This holiday season, it's important to remember to think long-term and not to make any major decisions in the heat of what is a busy and potentially stressful time of year. Keep conflicts in perspective, but also be realistic. If you're doing all you can to hold your marriage together but see that your spouse is not also doing their part, then it may be time to talk to your attorney about moving on and filing for a divorce.

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