Signs You and Your Spouse May Be Good Candidates for a Trial Separation
Before resorting to divorce, many couples consider the idea of legal separation, which allows them the opportunity to live apart and test the waters before committing to the decision to officially end their marriage. Research shows that a trial separation can be a wonderful, effective tool, particularly for those who truly do not desire to split up and who would like to repair their marriage.
While there are many advantages to attempting such an arrangement, experts tell us that not every marriage will benefit from a time-out, however. Some marriages simply do not make it, and many separations that are initially intended to serve as a temporary break for both spouses often end up being permanent and inevitably result in divorce.
Is Legal Separation Right for You?
Psychology professionals tell us that trial separations generally work for couples who are realistic about what a time-out really entails, and this means recognizing that it involves a lot of energy, hard work, and willingness on behalf of both parties to make the arrangement an effective one. If you are on the fence about trying legal separation versus diving straight into divorce proceedings, consider the following three signs that may indicate a separation is a good option for you:
1. You are willing to play by the rules - Therapists stress the importance of setting boundaries and ground rules when deciding to separate. Both parties must be willing to discuss uncomfortable subjects, such as dating other people during the break and a potential deadline for making the final call. If you are prepared to help set boundaries and honor your part of the agreement, it may be worth trying out a trial separation. It is not uncommon for couples to get back together, and the time they spent apart can prove to be a healthy, productive experience in the end.
2. You are not looking for a quick fix - Another common sign that therapists say is often a good indicator a couple may benefit from separation is the desire to repair - not avoid - problems in the marriage. Couples who approach separation as a means to slap a band-aid on a chronically toxic relationship usually do not see any improvement after spending time apart. Inherent problems such as unresolved, ongoing conflict may only get worse or simply return once both parties reunite. If you are looking to take time apart because you genuinely want to make the marriage better, experts say you have a greater chance of achieving a positive result.
3. You are concerned about your security - Concern over financial security is a very valid reason for pursuing legal separation before filing for divorce. Many spouses discover they will suffer significantly in this area by divorcing, including the loss of benefits, such as health insurance. Opting for a legal separation is helpful for those wishing to protect their rights and secure the necessities they need to survive. If you are concerned about your overall financial standing, you may benefit from temporary separation.
Divorce is never an easy call to make. If you have questions or concerns about your options for both legal separation and divorce, reach out to a skilled Kane County divorce lawyer for the guidance you need to make an informed decision. Call Shaw Family Law, P.C today at 630-584-5550 for your personal consultation.