First Steps in a Separation

First steps in a separation

The first steps in a separation can be overwhelming. Here are some simple tips to help you get through those early days.

Where do I begin?

See our 4 tips below to help you find your way forward while navigating the early days of separation or divorce.

Take care of yourself

Heard of that saying ‘fit your own oxygen mask first?’ Looking after yourself is so important when you are navigating separation and divorce. Particularly in the early days. This means being kinder to yourself, lowering your expectations and asking/receiving any help you can get. You are going through an incredibly tough time and each day or even hour you get through is a huge accomplishment. 

Slow down

Yes there are lots of decisions to be made when it comes to separating. But not necessarily immediately. If you are able to negotiate a ‘pause’ period where not much changes (it could just be for 3 or 4 weeks), it will allow some breathing space where you can both take some time to breathe and start to think about the way forward without the fear of having to turn your lives upside down overnight. 

3. Set ground rules

Set some simple grounds rules around communication with your ex-partner. If it helps, think of communicating with them like a ‘colleague/business partner’. Be respectful, courteous and do what you say you’re going to do. Irrespective of their behaviour, you have the choice to communicate in a way that ‘sets the tone’ for your separation moving forward. This isn’t always easy, especially in the heat of the moment. But if you practice ‘pausing’ before reacting and lead by example, it will demonstrate to your ex-partner that you want to resolve matters in the future in a way that is amicable, calm and respectful. 

4. Get professional help

It takes courage to make the decision to seek help from a counsellor or psychologist and if you need that assistance, please go for it! Separation isn’t a walk in the park for anybody involved and having a trusted advisor to help you navigate your way forward emotionally during this difficult time can be incredibly helpful.

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