Ask anybody who's been through a divorce to describe it, and you will probably yourself listening to anger, sorrow, resentment and anxiety.
In most cases, dissolving a marriage takes a high toll on everyone involved. But the toughest part is probably what happens first - when one or both partners make the decision to go their separate ways.
How should marriage partners whose relationship has badly deteriorated go about the business of deciding whether or not to end it? According to mental health experts, two key ingredients are always necessary if a troubled marriage is to be saved.
Both partners have to want to preserve the relationship and be willing to work toward that goal.
Both must be determined to try to recapture some of the original spark of affection and excitement that brought them together.
Often what is for the partners to sit down and start talking about the early days of their marriage, and then ask themselves if they can find a way to bring back some of the spark. Here are some other suggestions for partners grappling with troubled marriages.
If you haven't tried professional counseling yet, get started. "This may be divorce counseling or marriage counseling, depending on the situation and the needs of the partners.
Recognize that you've both changed a lot during the years of your marriage - and then talk about ways in which you can adapt to those changes in each other by communicating better.
Set out on a brand-new adventure together. Plan some time to refresh your relationship. Try something new and challenging, such as foreign travel, tennis lessons or building a cabin at the lake.