If the time comes to ask your spouse for a divorce, it’s natural to experience a variety of feelings. While you may be looking forward to your new life, it’s likely that you’ll also feel poorly about how your marriage is ending.

There are many ways to put your divorce on the right track, but it all starts with the first conversation you have with your spouse. Here are three things to do when asking for a divorce:

  • Remain calm: Don’t cry, get angry or become violent. When you keep calm, it’s easier to have a rational conversation that puts your mind at ease moving forward.
  • Prepare accordingly: You know your spouse better than anyone, so prepare accordingly. Understanding how they’ll react will allow you to best prepare for the conversation.
  • Don’t get caught up in the details of your divorce: Your sole goal is to express your feelings to your spouse. Let them know that you want a divorce and will be moving forward with the process. Don’t get caught up in the details of your divorce, such as who will get the family home and who will have physical custody of your children.

Even if you’re ready to put your marriage behind you, it’s never easy to ask your spouse for a divorce. There’s a lot that goes into it, as well as a variety of challenges that could present along the way.

Once you have this initial conversation, you can then focus on the divorce process and the steps you’ll take to protect your legal rights in the weeks and months to follow.