Is Emotional Abuse Grounds for Divorce?

Divorcee holding wedding ring on ledge

Emotional or verbal abuse can take a significant toll on you. According to an article by Verywell Mind, verbal abuse is the emotional harm people can experience during a verbal interaction. Common types of verbal abuse include:

  • Insults
  • Humiliation
  • Ridicule
  • Condescension
  • Degradation
  • Threats
  • Gaslighting
  • Withholding verbal affection or attention (i.e., the silent treatment)
  • Verbal attempts to isolate, scare, and or control someone

To end verbal abuse, many people decide to end the relationship. However, if you are considering a divorce because of emotional abuse, you can file for a fault-based divorce based on cruelty. Family Law courts take any instances of abuse very seriously, and fault-based divorces can have lasting impacts on the “guilty” party.

What Constitutes Cruelty in Divorce in Texas?

According to Texas Family Code Ann. § 6.002, you can get a divorce: if one spouse is guilty of cruel treatment towards the other, making a living together intolerable. Cruel treatment does not simply include physical abuse; it can consist of emotional abuse. However, emotional or verbal abuse can be hard to prove in court.

Proving Emotional Abuse in a Texas Divorce

As with any fault-based claim, there is a burden of proof. You and/or your lawyer must have evidence of the cruelty for the divorce petition to be granted. To prove emotional abuse, the evidence submitted might include the following:

  • Audio or video recordings
  • Documents
  • Screenshots of texts or social media messages
  • Witness testimonies

If you want to file no-fault (and avoid having to prove cruelty in court), you can also file on the grounds of in-supportability. An experienced attorney can advise you on the best progress in your case. When filing for divorce, you should immediately seek legal counsel.

If you are considering a divorce, you can trust the Law Offices of Mark M. Childress, PLLC, to support you. Verbal abuse can affect every area of your life, and we understand how hard it can be to decide to take steps to regain control and peace in your life.

We are committed to helping families as they navigate the divorce process and begin this new chapter. To schedule a consultation, don’t hesitate to contact our office at (817) 497-8148 or via our online form.
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