The thought alone of asking your spouse for a divorce is probably enough to make your palms sweat and your head ache. Even if you’re sure that it’s time to move on from your marriage, asking for a divorce is a complicated process that will have a far-reaching impact.

Here are four tips you can follow as you prepare to ask your spouse for a divorce:

  • Prepare yourself: From what you want to say to how you’ll react during the discussion, you need to prepare for anything and everything that could happen.
  • Choose the right time and place: Don’t make the mistake of having this conversation the first chance you get, as this could add more stress to an already difficult situation.
  • Don’t change your mind: Your spouse may be opposed to a divorce and ask you to reconsider. If you’re set on moving forward, don’t change your mind. Be gentle with your spouse, but don’t give in.
  • Don’t let too many details get in the way: This conversation is simply to tell your spouse that you want a divorce. It’s not the right time to talk about the details, such as who will get physical custody of the children or who will keep the family home.

Following these tips can make it easier for you to ask for a divorce. Once you have this part of the process out of the way, you can focus on what comes next. Now is when you want to learn more about your legal rights to child custody, child support, property division and alimony.