If you are living in miserable situation due to the actions of your spouse, you may need to divorce/legally separate to avoid big problems. Here are five issues that would necessitate you leaving your spouse to protect yourself financially, legally, mentally, and physically.

You are being financially abused by your mate.

You'll want to leave your spouse if you are involved in a "sweetheart scheme." This means you have married a person who initially seemed kind, loving, and financially responsible, but as time went on, you realized they were systematically draining all your assets and wrecking your credit. Your mate may even be secretly approaching your relatives or friends for "loans" or trying to involve them in risky ventures.

The longer you wait to do something about this, the more liable you would become for debts they are making.

Your mate is scamming other people or the IRS.

If your mate is involved in Ponzi schemes or other scams, you could become criminally and civilly liable for looking the other way, plus your reputation could be in jeopardy.

If your mate is not paying their taxes properly, the IRS or a state revenue service could hold you responsible for paying the back taxes as well. To protect yourself, you will have to collect evidence that you were not benefiting from their gains, apply for innocent spouse relief, and separate your financial affairs from theirs. Never sign a joint tax return if you have doubts about its veracity. 

On occasion, some people have tried to coerce their mates to confess to a crime they didn't commit, so they can escape charges themselves. They may say the judge would likely go much easier on you if you are mother of small children, and/or you don't have a criminal record. This is unwise since the person will likely commit more crimes and you would be enabling them to do so. This would also harm your chances for future employment, make problems for your kids, and make you even more dependent on someone you need to get away from.

Your mate's addictions are putting you and your children in an unsafe environment.

If your mate is cooking methamphetamines in or near your home, you and your children would be exposed to dangerous chemical vapors, and you would also be at risk for being injured or killed in an explosion. Drug activity would also expose you to people who could harm you for the money or the drugs. It would also confuse your children on what normal adult behavior is supposed to look like and cause them lifelong social/psychological problems.

This reason also leads to the following:

Your mate is involved in illegal activities

If your mate is involved in illegal activities such as possessing/selling drugs, thievery, or committing fraud, etc., and you are aware of it, you could receive "constructive possession" (knowledge of an illegal item being in a place where you have some control of what is there), drug possession, "accessory after the fact", or conspiracy charges. 

You and/or your children are victims of your mate's abuse.

If your children are being abused by your mate, you could be charged with "failure to protect" for not reporting the crime and not doing enough to prevent the abuse. Being a victim yourself is not legal justification for allowing child abuse to continue.

If you are being abused and you stay, the children undoubtedly will be psychologically affected by your continual victimization.

Legal Representation

You will need to contact a family or a criminal law attorney, like Edward Galang Law, for advice on how to find the best way extricate yourself from these situations and to protect yourself. If your religion bars divorce, a legal separation may afford many of same protections that divorce would.