Q&A - Would making sexual demands in public be grounds for divorce?

Q. My husband wants me to engage in sexual acts which I find unacceptable. He is particularly insistent about us having sex outdoors. I am a Governor at my children’s school and a well known member of my local community and I am therefore extremely worried about being discovered. He, on the other hand, seems to find the risk exciting. I can no longer cope with his constant demands. Do I have grounds for a divorce?

A. To prove that a marriage has irretrievably broken down you would have to prove one of five grounds. One of these is unreasonable behaviour and it sounds as though this is the ground upon which you would be looking to rely in this instance.

Within the divorce petition you would have to set out details of what you feel is your husband’s unreasonable behaviour. He would then be given the opportunity to put forward his views by way of response. It would ultimately be for a Judge to decide whether your husband’s requests amount to unreasonable behaviour such that you are entitled to a divorce.

You should speak to a solicitor in more detail about the divorce process, your finances and matters relating to the children. If you go ahead with a divorce you should also take advice upon making a Will. If you feel at all threatened by your husband then you should also discuss the possibility of applying for an injunction or reporting matters to the police.

There may of course be other aspects of a possible criminal nature which would be involved where sexual acts take place in an area which is open to the public and this should be borne in mind.

Article 22/04/2019

Nathan Wright, Partner at GHP Legal

Nathan Wright


A Partner specialising in Family and Matrimonial Law

Linda Hill

Linda Hill

Senior Solicitor

Linda Hill is based in our Oswestry office and was previously a partner with Stevens Lucas.