Is verbal abuse a grounds for my wife to make me leave and to divorce me?
04/29/2009 - Divorce - State: ALL #16369
My wife and I have been arguing and she is now seeking a divorce through a mediator. I am not in favor of divorcing but she claims that I am verbally abusive. I have on a few (maybe 5-6 times during our 20 year marriage) made rude comments. I'm not proud of this and have apologized each time that I lost my temper, but she refuses to forgive me and move on. My question is, based on these facts, does my wife have a legal grounds for making me leave our home and live elsewhere? She claims that if I try to move back to our home that she will file for a restraining order based on the fact that she says that she's been 'abused'. I might also add that on more than one occasion, she has fired back with some not very unpleasant comments to me, as well. I don't take the comments as abuse. Rather, I know that people sometimes loose their tempers and will occasionally say things out of anger that are hurtful and not truly meant. She says that if I try to move back into my home, that not only will she seek a restraining order, but will seek an Attorney to do 'battle' with me rather than seek a mediation and an amicable divorce. She also says that she will let my employer know about this and that this could then jeopardize my career. What should I do?
Generally, a spouse cannot be forced to leave the marital home unless there is a court order awarding possession to the other spouse or there is a restraining order in force. A restraining order may be granted not only to prevent physical or sexual abuse, but also to prevent verbal abuse, stalking, and other threatening behaviors. It will be a matter of interpretation for the court whether or not your actions amount to the level of abuse that justifies a restraining order. Verbal abuse is more likely to lead to a restraining order if it is coupled with persistent harassment or threats. In some cases, attending an anger management class or marital/individual counseling can lead to healthier communication in a relationship.
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04/29/2009 - Category: Divorce - State: ALL #16369
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