For many people, the first thing that springs to mind about a divorce is stress, anxiety, and horror stories. With legal expenses and prolonged conflict added on top, many couples prefer the idea of a legal separation instead. Thankfully, there are lots of tips on how you can manage a separation as your family transitions from a one-household unit to a two-household family without destroying relationships.
If you and your partner have decided to separate but stay legally married, here are 5 tips on how to ease the transition and ensure no one gets hurt in the process.
Treat Your Partner with Respect
Regardless of the reason for you separating from your partner, it’s important that you treat them with respect. The last thing you should do is badmouth them to family, friends, and especially not on a social media platform as this can come back to bite you later down the line. Effective communication is key for a separation, so make sure that you’re courteous and answer phone calls, text messages and emails. Keeping communication lines open will make the process and experience as stress free as possible.
Don’t Make Significant Changes
If you have been in charge of covering all the family bills, make sure that you continue to do so until you and your other half have reached an agreement on how expenses will be managed going forward. When going through a separation, this is not the time to splash out on a new car or go on vacation. Neither of you should be withdrawing or spending significant amounts of money without getting consent first. If you start to make significant changes, this can be damaging for your separation and result in conflict.
Conducting research and reading can be beneficial before discussing the pathways for an amicable divorce. Familiarizing yourself with meditation and collaborative law, and then having a conversation with your partner will help you both stay on the same page and weigh up the pros and cons. If your issues are complex and you find it difficult to communicate with your partner, there will be some options that are deemed more appropriate than others.
Choose a Family Mediator and Lawyer
Even if you decide against hiring a lawyer to represent you from start to finish, it’s still advised to get independent legal advice at some point in the process. Whether it’s at the start, partway through your negotiations, or before you sign your draft separation agreement, there are divorce lawyers who can help those who want to be legally separated.
Speak to a Counselor
Going through a separation can be heartbreaking for families, regardless of whether there are children involved or not. It’s important that you put your health and wellbeing first, so it may be wise to speak to a counselor who can help you through the process and keep your emotions at bay. Getting a good night’s sleep, eating healthy, and factoring in regular exercise will boost your mood and ensure you’re in the right frame of mind to deal with a separation.
While separating from your partner will be a challenging experience, there are lots of tips and techniques that you can use which will help you achieve an efficient and healthy resolution.