When Does Divorce Regret Set In – Why It Strikes – Confront and Conquer

Who thinks they will get divorced while marrying someone they love? Nobody! If the opposite was true, no one would get happily married to face the heartbreak of divorce later on. You don’t get divorced for fun’s sake; sometimes things just don’t work out between a loving couple, or one of the spouses disappoints the other with their words or actions.

Although divorce is a common occurrence in this fast-paced world, it can still be a harrowing experience. You might start feeling lost, hopeless, depressed, and nostalgic or even face shock if the divorce was unexpected for you. Regretting divorce is a natural thing many people face, so you are not alone in this uphill battle!

i filed for divorce and now regret it

When does divorce regret set in? It is important to identify the potential issue before dealing with it positively. Some people instantly realize, “Hey, I filed for divorce and now regret it.” Others regret divorce years later. No matter the timing of divorce regret, first, you should acknowledge you are dealing with divorce initiator regret, even if your reason to file for legal separation is totally authentic.

Hey! You might not have initiated the divorce, but you might still be left with lasting negative effects. Accept this reality, then try to overcome your divorce regrets by following proper thinking and practical approaches. Additionally, there are many solutions to your worries: having a loving support system or seeking professional help if necessary, being the prominent ones.

Shed your divorce blues for a few minutes and explore the less-discussed issue of divorce regret, and when does divorce regret set in? Moving forward toward a better future will definitely become easier by acknowledging and defeating your divorce regrets.

Does the Leaver Regret Divorce?

The divorce initiator regret is quite the reality. You feel guilt for initiating divorce proceedings and leaving your spouse even if they were to blame for any reason, such as alcoholism, infidelity and anger management issues. As a leaver, some people feel relief after divorce, while others may experience regret or even grief. There is no same answer here for every divorce because everyone experiences it differently. The important thing is to acknowledge and express whatever emotions you’re feeling, whether positive or negative.

The leaver may regret divorce when they realize the scope of its impact on their life. It could be for any reason: looking for a better life partner and not finding it, feeling lonely, missing your former spouse, etc. The moment your ex realizes this mistake they made by divorcing you, you get the answer to the question, “When does divorce regret set in?”

Divorce Regret Statistics

Divorce is a universally trending concept in relationships nowadays. In 2021, the 45 U.S. states alone reported a total of 689,308 divorces. According to Psychology Today, marriages ending in divorce amount to about half of the total, and this is for first marriages, but this divorce rate is recorded much higher for second and third marriages: 67% of second marriages and 73% of third marriages.

Avvo, online marketplace for legal services, conducted an Annual Relationship, Marriage, and Divorce survey, which found that men are more inclined to regret divorce than women. They must have experienced a moment of sheer panic once in their life with the thought that I filed for divorce and now regret it. Only 27% of the more than 250 divorced women analysed said they regretted their divorce. In contrast to women, 33% of more than 200 ex-husbands reported regretting leaving their wives.

divorce initiator regret

A Daily Mail survey made the stunning discovery that about 50% of the respondents regretted divorce after it happened. About 54% reported having second thoughts about their decision to divorce. In another place, a mental health counsellor commented that 80% of married couples divorcing due to infidelity regret their divorce. The fun fact is, this feeling of regretting divorce extends to both the betrayer and the betrayed.

Signs of Divorce Regret

Is your ex regretting divorce? There must be some hints or signs that made you suspect this, or you may see the tell-tale signs after a time when you stop looking for them. It is because some people regret divorce years later. A few general signs of divorce regret are:

  • Being nostalgic for the past relationship
  • Overwhelming feelings of guilt
  • Seeking emotional support or companionship from the ex
  • Reluctance to look for new relationships
  • Rethinking the severity of divorce-causing issues
  • A Desire for reconciliation
  • Staying in touch with each other
  • Constantly meeting up with the ex and others.

Midlife Crisis Divorce Regrets

Midlife crisis is a terrible thing, so much so that it can lead to divorce from one of the parties in the relationship. It is a period of transition in life where someone struggles with their self-confidence and self-image while moving from adult to middle life (40 to 60 years of age). No one is immune to it: men and women both express it with their own symptoms. Remember! It is mainly psychological, not a medical disorder.

A midlife divorce in the U.S. has become quite common. Here is the latest data about midlife divorce after 55 years old by the 2021 U.S. Census Bureau.

Midlife Divorce Rate for aged 55–64 years old:               Men = 18.5% and Women = 20.2 %

Midlife Divorce Rate for aged 65–74 years old:               Men = 14% and Women = 19%

The Mid-life divorce rate across the U.S. increased from 4.9 in 1990 to 10.3 in 2017. People simply do not wish to tolerate unhappy relationships.  They believe they have plenty of time to form stronger bonds with someone else.


So, when does divorce regret set in for those dealing with midlife divorce? Within only 5 years, about 33% of those who divorced due to a midlife crisis said they were dealing with the intense emotion of regretting divorce. Some women regret a midlife divorce, realizing, “I regret divorcing my husband and want to reconcile.” Then, it’s either too late or, in rare circumstances, they go to try for a second marriage with the ex-husband.

Menopause Divorce Regret

How many women can confidently claim, “I regret divorcing my husband and want to reconcile?” Here, sort of like men’s midlife crisis, women go through a hormonal phase of menopause, which really affects their attitude toward themselves and their close relationships. An unbelievably high percentage of women in the U.K. go for a divorce due to the menopause effect, directly or indirectly, and sometimes face the divorce initiator regret.

Over 60% of divorces in the U.K. are initiated by women in their 40s, 50s and 60s, ages when they are typically either going through perimenopause, menopause or are post-menopause.

i regret divorcing my husband and want to reconcile

How many of these women face menopause divorce regrets? Too many. Women going through menopause sometimes don’t even know why they have lost interest in their husbands for many years or decades. Such is the strain on a couple’s relationship of a woman’s hormonal changes, which are causing her anxiety, depression or not interested in intimacy with the husband. To avoid menopause divorce regret later on, a married couple should actively tackle the effects of menopause on each other. Yes, men can have menopause, too!

Do Ex-Husbands Miss their Wives?

If you are wondering, “Do ex-husbands ever regret divorce?” The answer is YES, they do. Even if the divorce was a mutual decision and both parties agreed it was for the best, there can still be unresolved feelings for each other. It doesn’t mean your ex-husband wants to get together with you; it just means he’s having difficulty adjusting to his new life without you. But, eventually, he will move on just like you have.

In other scenarios, ex-husbands don’t miss their wives, as the marriage didn’t work out for a reason. Both parties feel that they are better off without each other.

How to Get Over Divorce Regret?

Divorce regret may overpower you with negative emotions, but you can still overcome it through constructive steps:

  1. First, make a list of all your divorce regrets. Write them down on paper to aptly express your divorce regrets.
  2. Secondly, look for the WHYs of going for a divorce. There must be solid reasons you were inclined to make this big decision.
  3. Focus on your strengths and not weaknesses to snap out of divorce regret.
  4. Let yourself look for new opportunities and grow!

Wrapping Up!

Divorce regrets are a reality of life; there is no denying its existence. The key is to realize the question, “When does divorce regret set in?” Keep an eye on the signs of divorce regret and try to take yourself to a better psychological stage. Now, divorce is done and final. If you still persist in missing your ex-spouse, get support and help from your family, close ones or friends’ circle. You may even go to a counsellor for therapy to treat severe divorce regrets. Remember! Divorce regret affects both men and women equally.


Ans: Divorce regrets can set in at any time after a divorce. Some people experience regret immediately after the divorce, while others may not feel it until years later.

Ans: You can break divorce regret into FIVE stages.

  1. Denial
  2. Anger
  3. Bargaining
  4. Depression
  5. Acceptance

Ans: Yes, people who initiate divorce can regret it later on, particularly if the reason for divorce is incompatibility or just losing interest in your partner over time. It varies from person to person, as some divorce initiators stay regret-free even after a long time. This stands true if your partner had triggering issues, such as adultery, alcoholism, abusive habits, etc.


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