With the recent lockdown measures ordered by governors to help curb the spread of coronavirus, couples spend more time together than ever before. Many couples welcome these close confines, even if the situation presents a challenge for their relationship.
This challenge seems beyond some couples, however. As the weeks of quarantine stretch on, marriage counselors and divorce lawyers report a record number of calls as couples choose the best path forward for their marriage.
A record number of requests for counseling
Erin Wiley, director of The Willow Center in Ohio, says they do not have enough therapists to keep up with the influx of calls. Wiley says that the overwhelming number of calls concern marriage counseling. In the Center’s four years of operation, they’ve never seen such a high volume of calls.
The number of requests for counseling encourages most therapists. Couples who seek counseling have chosen to work together through the issues facing their marriage. In such proximity, the urgency of any marriage problems becomes heightened, so couples must decide to work them out or let them go. According to Wiley, these moments help spouses understand what they want for their marriage. When a spouse chooses divorce, they pick up the phone to make another kind of call.
Divorce is a solution, too
Many divorce attorneys cite an increase in call volume as well. This influx of inquiries about divorce mirror trends in China, which reopened its economy in mid-May. Those seeking a divorce can expect a longer delay than those on a waitlist for marriage counseling — most U.S. courts are opening slowly right now. States must prioritize cases involving violence before attending to divorce suits.
Bring questions to an attorney
Spouses considering divorce can contact a local lawyer familiar with divorce to explore their options. An attorney can assess one’s case, refer people to counselors or begin the process of filing for divorce. Additionally, a lawyer can discuss alternative dispute resolution options for divorcing couples looking for a speedy resolution.