What to Divorce When You Are Divorcing: Asking Dumb Questions

 

Forget what your middle school teacher may have said about there being no such thing as a dumb question. She only said that to encourage students to raise their hands and participate in class. Did you cheat on me before we got married? Did you only marry me because I was pregnant? Did you ever really love me? These are examples of dumb questions. Why are they dumb? Because, now that your marriage has ended, the answers will not change the past or fix what's now broken in your life.

Here are a few more examples of dumb questions that you should not waste your time asking:

Questions in which you already know the response. -- I had client who returned home early from work and found her husband in bed with their nineteen-year-old babysitter. Six months after her husband left her and moved in with the babysitter she wanted to know whether he ever cheated on her during the marriage.

Questions posed to someone whom you cannot trust to give you an honest response. -- Do you really think your husband is going to tell you why he walked away from your thirty-year marriage without as much as a backward glance? You could not trust him to honor your marriage vows, why do you trust him to honestly answer this question.

Questions posed to someone you don't need to be talking to in the first place. -- Let's just say for the purposes of argument that your mother-in-law made it clear from the moment you met her son that you were not good enough for him. And after you two walked down the aisle she took every opportunity she could throughout your marriage to make you feel like an unwelcome intruder. Whether you should continue talking to her after your marriage ends is up for debate. What is crystal clear is that she is not someone you should rely on to help you find the answers you need to move on.

Questions designed to hurt or illicit a negative response from the person to whom you posed the question. -- Why are you so stupid? Why can't you do anything right? Why are you such a loser? What's wrong with you? Just because you put a question mark at the end of a statement that does not automatically transform a verbal attack into a question.

Questions in which you really don't want to know the answer. -- Do you really want him to tell you why he chose his mistress over you? After 20 years of marriage, do you really want to know if he ever loved you or do you really want to know if he regrets the time you all spent together?

How can you tell the difference between a dumb and a smart question? Dumb questions will generate dumb responses or responses that make you feel stuck in the past. The response to smart questions will provide you with the information and insight you need to move forward.

 

 

This post is excerpted from What to Divorce When You are Divorcing. Download your free copy below:

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