Should My Spouse and I Try a Separation Before Getting Divorced?

Published On: November 12, 2020Categories: Divorce

Rockland County family law attorney legal separation

Most couples who find themselves on the road to divorce briefly think about the idea of separation before actually going through with the filing process. The motivators for exploring this option can stem from a multitude of factors; money, for example, is usually a big factor. Research shows that divorced couples typically experience greater financial hardship after divorcing than the money struggles they experience during their marriage. Some people simply stay married and first attempt separation because it is financially detrimental to both parties to legally dissolve the marriage.

Candidates for Separation

Psychology experts indicate that a majority of couples who choose to try separation do so because deep down they do not wish to divorce. While money and other circumstances may be contributing factors to a couple’s decision to take time apart, a number of people separate to see what space can do for their marriage and to see if the break can potentially salvage the relationship.

While a trial separation may be a reasonable option for those who wish to save their marriage, it does not work for everyone. If your marriage is currently on the rocks, you and your spouse may be good candidates for separation if the following applies to you:

  • You are able to set—and follow—ground rules. The most important part of any trial separation is the laying of ground rules beforehand. Make sure you are willing to set boundaries and you will follow through with them. This includes rules about phone contact and all forms of communication, dating other people, and a timeframe for getting back together.

  • You are not using the separation as a “Band-Aid.” The big test of a separation period is about finding out whether or not the time apart actually brings you back together or draws you further away from one another. Experts say that if the atmosphere you are taking a break from is already constantly toxic, comprised of ongoing conflict and arguments, then you may need to explore the possibility that separation is merely a bandage on an inevitably unhealthy relationship.

  • You are willing to roll your sleeves up and do the necessary work. A trial separation requires just as much emotional energy as it does to get back together and reshape and revive the marriage. If you and your spouse recognize that things need to change and you are both willing to do the work to make it happen, then separation may be right for you.

Contact a Hudson Valley Family Law Attorney

If you feel you have done all you can to repair your marriage and have resigned to filing for divorce, it is time to speak with a qualified Rockland County divorce lawyer for experienced legal counsel and guidance. Find out how to protect your rights throughout the proceedings by calling the Law Offices of Robert S. Lewis, P.C. at 845-358-7100. Schedule a free consultation today.