5 Tips For Separating Couples

Separating from your partner is one of the hardest things you can do, especially if it follows a long-term relationship, perhaps even a marriage, a shared home and children.

It might be made marginally easier if the break-up is amicable, but it will be a whole lot more painful if one has wronged the other or one of you doesn't want the relationship to end.

But, whatever the reason for the separation, here are a few tips that should help to make it a little bit easier...

1. Put your kids first

If you have children, then in the first instance you must push your thoughts and feelings aside and make sure you put them first. This can be easier said than done, especially if the break up isn't amicable. But you must be honest with them and allow them the opportunity to talk and share how they are feeling - this will give you the opportunity to both understand and alleviate their concerns and worries. Similarly, one of the first things you need to organise and discuss is who will have custody and how much child maintenance the other will pay. The sooner this is sorted, the less the situation will disrupt them.

2. Give it some time

It is so easy to say and do things in the heat of the moment that we don't mean. So take some time to go away individually and think about how you feel and what you want to happen. This could include how you want to split your belongings, where you want the kids to spend their time, what will happen money wise, and so on. Then when you come back together to discuss it, you will be clear about what you want to happen. You might even want to write it down and give the other person a chance to digest what you have to say and consider it - so, again, you don't say anything in the moment that you might later regret. Hopefully this will help you to both agree and compromise where necessary.

3. Get your finances in order

Money, as you know, can be the root of all evil and it's going to be a big and perhaps stressful part of the break up. If you have been living together as a couple and then separate, you have fewer rights than a couple divorcing or dissolving their civil partnership. The more you can agree in relation to your property, possessions and assets, the easier the break-up will be.

4. Know your rights

It is important to know and understand what you are entitled to during a break up. So make sure you do your research to ensure you don't miss out. There are, for example, benefits you may be able to claim, such as tax credits and a discount on your rates or Council Tax.

5. Get someone else involved

If you are struggling to come to an agreement between you, then it is time to get someone else involved. This doesn't mean sending your best friend or mum round to shout at them, it means using a solicitor or speaking to someone who can advise you.

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