Separation means that you and your spouse are living apart from each other, but you’re still legally married until you are granted a divorce from a court (even if you already have an agreement of separation).
We often think it is bad when a couple lives apart. We usually see separation as something used mostly by couples that have reached the point whereby break-up is inevitable. We see separation as a tactic used after all inventions and tricks have been used to get the marriage back on track. Most of us believe that when we feel our partner is slipping away from us, we should merge and bond more so as to get close to him or her as much as we can, and do more than enough to make the marriage work.
Separation in a marriage is often misunderstood due to the lack of rules, guidelines and instructions and the ease with which it can be carried out. It’s fraught with many dangers if certain clear objectives aren’t laid down or ultimately met during or after the separation. The main aim of any separation is to give the each other space and enough time in a relationship or marriage to decide on future actions and strategies, especially in saving the marriage without undue influence from each other.
However, there are some rules involved in separation to make it successful; we have taken the luxury of our time to highlight some of these rules for you.
Having clear set boundaries is essential to building trust amongst partners during and after a separation. Setting boundaries helps in explaining how much space you’re comfortable with, in a relationship either emotionally or physically while separated.
Boundaries can be about all sorts of things: how much time you need alone, when your partner is permitted to visit you, who is to be the custodian of the kids and the visiting time and so on. Having an understanding of one another’s boundaries is helpful when it comes to building trust in the separation.
Make decisions regarding your intimacy
You have to decide whether you will still remain intimate with your partner. You have to make decisions regarding your communication and sex life. You have to make decisions whether you will have sex and if you will spend time with one another while still separated. Couples should have an agreement as to the amount of affection between them during the separation.
It is advisable not to engage in sexual interaction and intercourse while in a separation as it will build up anger, grief and confusion in the mind of the couples.
Plan for financial obligations
There should be a clear arrangement about what happens to the assets, cash, monies, debts during a separation. There should be equal sharing of resources and obligations and children are to be sufficiently taken care of. How the assets, cash, monies, debts will be sorted should be decided upon before the separation takes place, so the person left with the children doesn’t endure any financial burden that might ensue. You are to conclude and agree on the amount of financial obligations to be borne by each partner.
Assets, funds and resources should be shared fairly among the partners before the separation so that one partner will not be left to bear the burden of being overwhelmed with financial obligations that occurred while you are still together.
Ideally, having a business meeting to make adjustments to child-care or bill-payment schedules and also to care for other expenses should be made at particular intervals. If meeting face to face will be too emotionally difficult, couples may shift to an email exchange.
Set a specific time frame for the separation
The separation should have a specific time frame attached to it so that the separation’s main aim will be accomplished- to decide the future actions to make in the marriage, maybe to end or continue. The time frame should, if at all possible, be between three and six months so a sense of determination and seriousness is retained, especially where there are kids are involved.
The longer the separation is, the separated couple settle into their new routine and then it gets harder to get back to the old married life. Any separation that slogs on for a very long time will gradually turn into two new and detached lifestyles.
Communicate with your partner effectively
Steady and effective communication is a vital component that determines the quality of any relationship, marriage and even separation. Communicate with each other effectively and grow together in love. The most effective and efficient to communicate in a relationship is to talk face-to-face.
Just because your partner is not around you or because you are separated doesn’t mean you should lose touch. Always communicate with him or her but not all the time.