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Don't assume life will change after marriage

People often talk about marriage being life-changing, and there certainly are ways your life will change after you tie the knot. But you don't want to assume that life will change in specific ways, or it can lead to a quick divorce.

Relationship experts point out that many fast divorces -- after just a year or less of marriage -- may happen for this reason. One person thinks things will be different with their partner, and they only agree to the marriage on those grounds. When nothing changes, they opt for a divorce.

For instance, a couple may be having problems. Maybe one person doesn't have a job, there is a lot of financial stress, and the other person is also stressed because they don't feel like their partner cares enough about starting a career. They just hang out with their friends and kill time watching TV.

They tell themselves that it will change after the wedding. That's when their partner will take things seriously, land a job, start getting a paycheck, eliminate their debt and work hard for the family. Instead, they get married and the person just keeps coasting along, the debt gets worse and it looks like nothing is ever going to change. Quickly, their partner realizes that this isn't what they wanted and they file for divorce.

Managing expectations is important. When they do not fit with the reality of the marriage, that can be a deal-breaker. If you find yourself moving toward a divorce after only being married for a short time, you need to know what legal options you have.

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