Decision to separate: How the hell you inform your spouse about it?
How do you inform your spouse about the decision to separate;
Decision to separate
No hostility and knives are needed to reach a breakup. It is enough to go to bed and wake up, accompanied by a feeling of loneliness and the nagging question – is this situation the best it can be?
It is a process that develops, until at the end of the process, one of the spouses comes to the conclusion that he does not want to continue on the common path. Sometimes the conclusion comes during a treatment process and sometimes independently.
In both cases, there is a great difficulty, which stems from the questions and concerns that a separation raises – what will happen to the children, what will be the reactions in the extended family as well as in the social environment. Alongside these are questions that reflect economic concern.
Usually in addition to this there are also quite a few guilt feelings in the complex. These beatings become part of a person’s daily conduct, and accompany him around the clock. At some point the decision matures to embark on a new path, without the same spouse with whom he or she has shared life so far.
As this decision matures, sometimes the road to being already there is accelerated, in the new place. Especially when it comes to the end of a long personal process.
However, it is important to understand and remember that in this place the couple are at completely different points; The spouse who is about to hear about the separation may not be satisfied with the marriage, however, in most cases, he has not yet reached the maturity of the decision to leave the marital framework.
For him, the announcement of a breakup may be surprising, not to mention, creating a general earthquake. The sense of security he derives from being in a relationship is about to disappear in a daze.
The decision to separate marks the beginning of a new path, which begins in a very difficult place: the announcement of the separation from a spouse. The scenario of this message and of the spouse’s response can be so frightening that it tends to be rejected.
Looking for the right time to announce decision to separate
How long? Until tomorrow, until after the holidays, until after the birthday, until the young child finishes high school.
Such delays lead to further delays, which can last for months and years. This is the stage where people live in a dying marriage, they do not live the life they want and in fact also prevent their partner from developing a life that will be better for him. The same key they need in order to embark on a new path, will also free the other spouse from a faded bond and when the time comes, build a new love bond.
The fear is easy to understand. In a society that sanctifies marriage and sees the establishment of a relationship and family as a cultural life mission, with the linguistic reference to separation being “marriage failure” or “marriage that has broken up” – the decision to divorce is a public admission of failure.
It is also easy to understand the fear of a spouse’s reaction. The injury that results from the revelation that you are neither the beloved nor the chosen one, that the little piece of God that you thought you had created, has disappeared and is no more, is an unbearable injury to the sense of self. Injured spouses often show symptoms of depression or illness.
In many cases the injury translates into initiating legal proceedings and a campaign designed to produce social condemnation of the spouse who has decided to separate, for the very decision.
Danny Sanderson sings about the walk into the unknown, and asks how we will know, whether it is good or bad, there, the unknown. The decision to separate is accompanied not only by uncertainty about the spouse’s reaction to the decision, but also by uncertainty as to how life will be conducted after the separation.
When all these complex questions and feelings accompany the person, it is easy to understand the fear and the tendency to delay giving the message. The problem is that there is no good time to announce a breakup, and postponing the announcement will not make things any easier.
On the contrary – sometimes the announcement will be made in an uncontrolled manner, in the midst of a quarrel that gets out of control, without planning, without preparation and with even greater harm.
Although the announcement of the breakup symbolizes difficulty, it also symbolizes the hope that it is possible otherwise.
A separation that takes place with courage, determination, honesty, compassion and honesty, gives the couple an opportunity to process the process, put the disappointments behind, capture the good moments they had, and set about developing their personal lives, each for himself, down the road.
The spouse who is about to receive the message often feels distant from the other spouse. Unnecessary procrastination will intensify the feeling of insult and anger over the separation, the feeling that life was conducted in a kind of lie and unfairly.
However, there is also no reason to expect appreciation for the sincerity and courage that were mobilized for the purpose of the announcement. There is also no room for expectation of a containing and accepting response from the spouse.
The desire to separate should be revealed with a sense of responsibility for the expected harm, and to mobilize for this purpose the mental strength to withstand the anger, pain, insult, and the way all of these will be expressed. If there is one thing you should not expect it is empathy.
Accompaniment and guidance on the way to divorce
It is important to walk with the partner on the path to separation in a way that will allow them to cross the path, while leading the process to the end point of the marital relationship.
Some couples need a break to think and digest the information, others will want to try a couple therapy procedure – it is worth remembering that this is a person you once chose to share your life with. Walking at a pace that is also suitable for the spouse, will make it easier to reach a breakup.
It is important to manage the separation from a place of mutual respect that can, among other things, also help shorten the process.
Seeking couple therapy
Spouses who feel that the marital system is rising or has already run aground, sometimes choose to seek couple therapy, even if one of them has made a decision to separate.
It happens that during the treatment one of the spouses makes the decision to separate. The treatment room, and the presence of a therapist who can help the couple, may be an easier environment for both partners to notify, and receive the notice.
In other cases, going for couple therapy, even after the notice, due to the other spouse’s request, can, in the end, facilitate the separation. In this situation both spouses feel that they have indeed made every effort to save the marital relationship.
A romantic triangle
When the decision to separate falls against the background of the existence of another romantic relationship, there is a danger that the discovery of this relationship will make the separation process more difficult.
Personal injury is particularly severe and often involves anger, complete breach of trust and the need for revenge and punishment.
The spouse who is in a new relationship may, too, go through difficult times. Excessive restraint, accountability for the harm done, the ability to apologize for the harm (even if not for the very existence of another relationship) will help, perhaps, reduce the extent of the emotional damage but will not prevent it.
The haste is the devil
Even if the path to separation is fast for you, it is important not to push the abandoned spouse to move forward in the separation proceedings.
Significant pressure can lead to retaliatory reactions, the opening of unnecessary legal proceedings and the deterioration of the relationship between the parties in a way that can make the divorce particularly painful and unnecessary and lasting harm to both the couple and their children.
It will be for lifetime
Unlike marriage, divorce is for life, especially where there are children. Separation is a move that will accompany the couple for the rest of their lives.
A separation that is conducted in a considered manner, when the couple receives, each one, good emotional support and they have a helping and supportive social network, will facilitate the transition to the next chapter in life and will leave less precipitation.
It is important to make room for grief, mourning and pain at the end of a chapter, before moving on to the next chapter.
The decision to break up and end the relationship is not a simple decision. It is not easy, neither on the part of the herald nor on the part of the recipient of the message.
When dealing with the difficulty and conveying the message of separation in the understanding that it is a necessary evil, when taking responsibility for a storm that will break out – cross the hurdle of the message and reach the complex stage of dissolving the marriage and embarking on a new path.