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Contemplating Divorce: A Step-by-Step Guide to Deciding Whether to Stay or Go [Kindle Edition]

Susan Gadoua
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Just as there are right and wrong reasons to marry, there are good and bad reasons to divorce. Some couples are quick to split because they are unwilling to devote the necessary effort to fixing their relationships or to understanding their partners, while others miss out on personal fulfillment by staying too long in unhealthy marriages.

This insightful and practical guide, written by a therapist with nearly a decade of experience counseling those considering divorce, will help you evaluate your marriage to determine whether you should stay or go. Without bias toward or against the option of divorce, Contemplating Divorce includes helpful tools to guide you to the right decision.

  • Use the tests and relationship evaluations to assess your level of fulfillment in your marriage
  • Learn about the five types of needs happy marriages satisfy
  • Find out how to fix 'problem areas' in your relationship
  • Plan for the future, whether you decide to stay or move on

This is a much-needed book. The anxiety in making a life-changing decision is sometimes overwhelming. It is of immense help to have a coach like Susan Pease Gadoua!
-John Bradshaw, best-selling author of Homecoming and Creating Love

Better than therapy! Pease Gadoua allows the reader who is contemplating any great change to process the pros and cons in the confines of his or her own heart and mind, leaving no chance for those on the fence to skip out on the truth. A must-read for any transition.
-Joan Anderson, bestselling author of A Year by the Sea, An Unfinished Marriage, A Walk on the Beach, and The Second Journey

Making an appointment to see a divorce lawyer doesn't mean that the person I am advising necessarily needs or wants a divorce. With Pease Gadoua's wise, thorough, and accessible book, Contemplating Divorce, at last there is a resource I can give to confused and unhappy clients who think the marriage may be over but can't decide whether the embers are truly dead or not.
-Pauline H. Tesler, author of Collaborative Divorce and Collaborative Law

An exceptional and outstanding book for all those considering making the life-altering decision to divorce. Pease Gadoua offers profound personal insight and practical guidance that empowers adults to find clarity, overcome hurdles, and make the best choices for the future of their relationships. I wholeheartedly recommend Contemplating Divorce to men and women alike.
-Helene Taylor, Esq., president and founder of

Editorial Reviews


From the Publisher

By clarifying assumptions about and expectations for their relationships to their spouses, the step-by-step approach in Contemplating Divorce helps readers decide whether to try to make a flagging marriage work or proceed with the difficult decision to divorce.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1192 KB
  • Print Length: 216 pages
  • Publisher: New Harbinger Publications; 1 edition (April 1, 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1608825515
  • ISBN-13: 978-1608825516
  • ASIN: B005LQ6UIE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #156,281 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
51 of 55 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Deceiving title April 6, 2012
By Y.
I gave this book only two stars because, although it is well-written and informative, the book does not deliver on the promise of the title ("Deciding Whether to Stay or Go"). The book reads as a guide to rationalizing the decision that the reader has already made (to get a divorce) and does not offer much in the way of deciding whether staying in the marriage might be the appropriate outcome. The case study examples rarely end in the couples reconciling and frequently concern more grave situations (for example, abuse and alcoholism or drug addiction) than the garden-variety marital issues that might lead one spouse to think about divorce. Most of the case studies that don't involve abuse or addiction demonstrate repeated missed opportunities for working on marital issues in a healthy manner that could have strengthened the relationship. Instead, the examples gloss over any attempts to reverse the negative patterns established through periods of insufficient articulation and responses to needs and tend to reveal and attitude more of "it's broken - time to go" rather than "it's broken - time to fix it."

This book would be great for the reader who already knows that they want a divorce. However, I would absolutely not recommend it to someone who still believes that they have or might have a reason to stay in their marriage or that the marriage can be saved. There are other books that can help readers learn how to stop their negative behavior patterns and develop positive relationship skills. This book skims over that crucial aspect of determining whether one should "stay" in a marriage--an aspect that might save more marriages.
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40 of 43 people found the following review helpful
This book is fantastic, and was instrumental in parting the clouds for me during one of the most difficult times of my life - determining whether my marriage was salvagable or not. The exercises in this book are very helpful in assessing the work that needs to be done on a marriage, and in determining whether that work can be done by the two of you or not. I highly recommend this book whether you are contemplating divorce or not - in my case, I was contemplating it, and some of the exercises in this book made it crystal clear to me which path was the right one for me. I can't begin to express how thankful I am to have run across this book, and highly recommend it to anyone facing even the smallest difficulties in their marriage - it can help you see how to approach fixing things if you choose to, or deciding that it is time to end things if you choose to.
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23 of 28 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I bought this book for a friend, and ended up previewing it myself to make sure it was worth passing on; it definitely is. Having gone through a split 5 years ago (not of my choosing, but ultimately of my relief), I was able to look at this book through the lens of hindsight. I think it is an excellent guide, and I've recommended it to a therapist friend of mine, and she agrees. The most important aspect of the book is that there is no right or wrong answer for any/every reader, of course. Every relationship is different, and anyone reading this book will have the opportunity to consider the thought-provoking questions at the end of each chapter to see if the marriage can be saved, or if too much damage has been done. Especially if the question of therapy or counseling is currently not an option for you, this book provides a most excellent and inexpensive substitute first step in the process of considering what to do next. Highly recommended.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars OUTSTANDING book November 23, 2008
This book offers the reader a wealth of information about the difficult, limbo space between an unhappy marriage and making the decision to stay or leave. I especially appreciated Susan's applications of the theories of phases of contemplation and Maslow's hierarchy of needs to help the reader gain clarity about his or her own process. The exercises are helpful and worthwhile to do. This is a very practical volume that gave me much to reflect on. I recommend it highly for both therapists and the general public.
Dorie Rosenberg, L.M.F.T.
San Rafael, CA.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Marriage & Family Therapist review November 22, 2008
After reading many books on the subject, I found the material in 'Contemplating Divorce' to be thought-provoking and original, particularly about the cyclic nature of denial and grief. The author outlines clear stages of the process and direction on the most difficult decision: how to know when to keep trying at a marriage and when to let go. Although "Divorce" is in the title, the book has a wealth of wise counsel on doing what's possible to mend a relationship and an expanded definition of 'failure' and 'success.' I recommended this book and the writing exercises at the end of each chapter to many clients. The author has a refreshingly balanced perspective that provides readers with a clear light.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This books describes issues, then gives you the option of writing out your thoughts and where you feel you are in the process.
Offers insight into doing some of the steps more often and revisiting steps you did back a ways. I did not sit down and read this book in one or two evening, I have been working my way through it over the course of a number of weeks. It seems I am able to soak it up and put some of the thoughts to use this way.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Several of my clients found this useful in deciding whether to divorce
Several of my clients found this useful in deciding whether to divorce, what some alternatives might be and how to work out an amicable separation if they chose that option.
Published 25 days ago by Kmen Park
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Helpful book
Published 1 month ago by kamil nemri
4.0 out of 5 stars Bought for a friend.
Bought this for a friend and I have no idea what she thought.
Published 6 months ago by toooff10
5.0 out of 5 stars Very helpful. Forces you to consider all the angles.
Shortly after starting this book I made a decision to separate from my husband. It became clear early in my reading that doing nothing changes nothing. Read more
Published 10 months ago by SWolfe
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book!
This is a great book to read if your contemplating separation or divorce. I was separated and bought this book. Read more
Published 12 months ago by A. Bojanowski
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read before you take it to the next level and leave
Follow the steps to happiness, piece of mind and a life worth living. Don't waste anymore time order now. Proper planning prevents you know..
Published 14 months ago by Janet
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book
This book is great. Gives you a real understanding of relationships and what you are going through contemplating divorce. Glad I have gotten it.
Published 14 months ago by kamil
5.0 out of 5 stars Unbiased guide for individuals and psychotherapists
The book Contemplating Divorce is a unique and valuable resource for both psychotherapists working with couples and individuals contemplating divorce, as well as for individuals... Read more
Published 22 months ago by V. Brown LCSW
4.0 out of 5 stars informative
Started reading this book a week before my divorce. Finished it a month after. It'll help one see clearly. Decision making is entirely up to you. Read more
Published 24 months ago by Conquerer
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book, but don't make the mistake I did.
This book was very informative and objective. I wish I had known about it years ago. Just know that there are a lot of excerises included in the book that were nearly impossible to... Read more
Published on March 4, 2013 by Jimbo
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More About the Author

Susan Pease Gadoua is a best selling author and speaker. She is a licensed therapist, an expert on marriage and divorce, and has been working with individuals, couples, and families as well as leading groups and workshops for nearly twenty-five years.

Susan has been a featured guest on numerous radio and television programs across the U.S. and Canada including The CBS Early Show, ABC's View From The Bay, has appeared in publications such as the Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, USA Today, REDBOOK Magazine, and Divorce Magazine. She is also a regular columnist for The Huffington Post and

Along with her husband, Michael, and two dogs, Susan lives in Sonoma County, California.


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