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By:  Darlene Zagata






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Separation Before Divorce

In many states it is required by law that a couple must be separated at least a minimum of thirty days before either party can file for divorce. While some may be irritated by this stipulation, being separated from one's spouse for a period of time, sometimes proves to be well worth the effort. When you are with someone constantly, emotions tend to cloud logical thinking, which makes it difficult to be decisive based on rational thoughts. A separation may be the best way to clear your head and sort out your feelings.

Of course there are those couples who could be separated for years and would still be intent on getting a divorce. These people are either unwilling to consider their present position, or have put forth every effort possible, to no avail. In many cases though, a separation can provide spouses the opportunity to re-examine their relationship in a completely new way. After having time away from one's spouse, and being able to think about what changes you want to make in your relationship, a person may realize that it is the circumstances of their relationship that they want to divorce, not their spouse.

In many broken relationships, the spouses love one another; it's the traits or habits of their spouse that they don't want to live with. Unfortunately, many of us are not good listeners, and it may be difficult for us to discuss our feelings openly with our spouse. This lack of communication may lead the marriage partner to assume that there is more wrong with the relationship than what really is at the root of the problems. The biggest problem is usually misunderstanding, due to lack of communication. If only we could really say what we feel in our hearts, rather than let our emotions fight back with hurt and anger.

Think of a separation as a time out period, a time to think and determine what you really need. Many people find themselves missing their spouse after a period of absence. They start to think about the things they may have spent years complaining about, and find that they have become less important than they had once thought. Disagreements that were focused on begin to fade into oblivion. You may come to see that the person is more important than the minor irritations that were magnified by emotional distress. Going through the trial separation may be the most important part of the divorce process, because it provides insight into the heart of the relationship. Sometimes we make rash decisions which we later regret. The decision to divorce is just as important as choosing to commit oneself in marriage. It deserves to be thought out carefully.

A relationship is a precious and irreplaceable part of one's life. It deserves every chance for the best. A temporary separation from your spouse is not a cure-all for every marital woe, but it does provide the opportunity to see what life without your spouse may be like. The time apart may allow one to take a better look at the relationship. If your marriage does not survive the test, then in all actuality you've lost nothing by trying. If on the other hand, you decide to give your marriage a second chance, you may find that you've gained everything.





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Copyright 2000/2001/2002. All rights reserved.   No unauthorized reproduction or excerpts without express permission from  Child Care Magazine or DataWorkZ and the author of the article.  Please read our Disclaimer and our Privacy Statement.