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Divorce is coming: Here are the red flags to watch out for

You don't need to know the statistics about the divorce rate. You don't need to hear stories from your friends. You don't need to ask family members for advice.

You can still see that divorce is coming. All you need to do is look out for the signs in advance. In most cases, it's clear that you're going to get divorced long before your spouse serves you those divorce papers. You just need to know how to see it and what it means.

After all, preparation is important. If you know it's coming, you can start preparing for the legal process and your life after the marriage ends. The more warning you have, the better off you'll be. With that in mind, look out for these red flags.

1. You don't want to spend time at the house

You make excuses. You make plans with friends. You seek out new activities. You know that it's not because you necessarily want to do those activities or spend more time with those friends. You just want to spend less time with your spouse. Every excuse puts more distance between the two of you and you start to feel uncomfortable when you do spend time at home.

2. The little things lead to fights

You say you're going to take out the trash and then you forget. Your spouse says they're going to walk the dog and then they don't do it. These little annoyances plague every marriage, but, for you, they become reasons to fight. Everything seems to lead to a serious argument. It could be that deeper issues lurk below the surface, making these things seem worse than they are.

3. You feel like you're ignoring your instincts

You have a gut feeling that the end is coming. Something is wrong. The marriage just doesn't feel right. You have to work hard to ignore it and push those thoughts aside. They keep coming back. You can ignore them if you want, but you know what they mean.

4. Communication breaks down

Married couples have to communicate. They have to talk about plans, emotions, desires and even the things that bother them. If you're still talking, you can often work things out. When communication breaks down, though, you stop working together. You keep your frustrations to yourself. You don't know how to start those important conversations. Perhaps you're simply too far past the point of no return.

Your rights

If you have seen some of this in your own marriage, you need to know what to do when your spouse shows up with the divorce papers. Make sure you understand the legal process and the rights you have.

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