When your marriage is already on the rocks, a separation may feel like the final crushing blow. It doesn’t have to be. A separation may be the first step in getting a divorce, but it could also make your marriage stronger. The difference is in how both you and your partner are feeling and what you make of the situation. A separation can be difficult, but you will get through it if you just find the strength that you need.
Establish the ground rules of the separation. You and your spouse need to have the same expectations. If you are just “taking a break,” for example, have rules about whether you can date other people, how often you’ll contact each other and when you are going to make a final decision about the relationship. This makes everything clear to both parties and discourages additional hurt.
Explain the situation to your children. Your children are likely to be as upset about the separation as you are. They must understand that both you and their father still love them and that you’re just living apart for awhile. If a divorce is likely, you should let them know this to soften the blow later on.
Talk to your family and friends. These people love you and can give you the emotional support that you need during this time. You may need others to prop you up if you are feeling depressed about the situation.
Eat well, and get your exercise. When you are feeling upset, you may be more likely to take the easy way out–to stop exercising and start going to fast-food restaurants for your meals. If you do not take care of your body, you are only going to feel worse.
Maintain your normal routines as much as you can. This will help you to feel more normal.
Take life one day at a time. Whether you get back together with your spouse or not, it takes time to heal. When you focus on just getting through one day, it becomes a little bit easier to survive. As the days go by, you will start to feel better.
- ring image by Jens Klingebiel from Fotolia.com