Help, We're Separating! Reboot

susan-leighIn this special 100th episode of the Smart Divorce podcast, we welcome back our first ever guest, the wonderful counsellor and hypnotherapist Susan Leigh for a reboot of that first discussion. What are the things you should do and think about at the beginning of your divorce journey? Listen in to find out.

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Susan Leigh

Altrincham, Cheshire, South Manchester counsellor, hypnotherapist, relationship counsellor, writer & media contributor. She's author of 4 books, 'Dealing with Stress, Managing its Impact', '101 Days of Inspiration #tipoftheday' and 'Dealing with Death, Coping with the Pain'; her fourth book, 'Your Divorce Handbook, It's What You Do Next That Counts', is a collaboration between two family lawyers, a mediator, financial planner, mortgage specialist & her wellbeing support, containing the latest information.  To order a copy or for more information, help and free articles visit

Tamsin Caine

Tamsin is a Chartered Financial Planner with over 20 years experience. She works with couples and individuals who are at the end of a relationship and want agree how to divide their assets FAIRLY without a fight.

You can contact Tamsin at or arrange a free initial meeting using She is also part of the team running Facebook group Separation, Divorce and Dissolution UK

Tamsin Caine MSc., FPFS
Chartered Financial Planner
Smart Divorce Ltd

P.S. I am the co-author of “My Divorce Handbook – It’s What You Do Next That Counts”, written by divorce specialists and lawyers writing about their area of expertise to help walk you through the divorce process. You can buy it by scanning the QR code…



Tamsin Caine  0:06  
In the celebration of our 100th episode, I'm delighted to be joined today by our first ever guest on the Smart Divorce Podcast, Susan Leigh. And we're gonna talk everything about what you should do when you first separate. Let's jump right in. Hello, and welcome to the Smart Divorce Podcast. Today is our 100th episode. And I'm so very proud of that fact. And obviously, we'd like to thank all of you for carrying on listening. But we've got a very, very special guest today, who I'm so delighted she's agreed to join us for this special episode, so Susan Leigh was our first ever guest on the Smart Divorce podcast, her episode is still the most popular episode listened to by our listeners. So we thought we'd do a reboot, so, Susan, thank you so much for agreeing to join me again.

Susan Leigh  1:07  
My pleasure I hope we've not aged that much since we started. 100th episode, that's some going isn't it? 

Tamsin Caine  1:14  
It really is 

Susan Leigh  1:15  
Well done to you actually putting out all that information and support and advice to people that's really, really good to go

Tamsin Caine  1:22  
It seems to be well regarded by people who've listened. So really pleased about that. And it's great to give something back to the community as well. And I hope people do find it really useful. For those of our listeners who have not yet come across you in various of the episodes that we've recorded over time, would you just give us an introduction and tell everybody a bit about who you are and what you do?

Susan Leigh  1:50  
Well, I'm a counsellor, and a hypnotherapist, and I work a lot with couples, or I work with individuals who are looking to get divorced, or perhaps even reconcile and sort out the issues and problems they have in their relationships. I'm co author of our book that all various experts on this site, co wrote together, which is Your divorce handbook - It's what you do next, that counts; because it is what you do next, that doesn't make a difference, whether you're going to be angry, or go into that sort of negative phase and never talk about anybody ever again or meet anybody ever again. Or indeed if you want to move on. And that book is a great book for all the all the various stepping stones you need to do is completely up to date with all the latest legal information, all the latest mediation and financial information. And obviously I wrote the wellbeing section. So a lot of information there and it's about 12 pounds on Amazon. there abouts I think is on offer at the minute tends to be held up for a lot, doesn't it. But it's a really useful handbook. And I think the thing with that is you can dip in and out of it. And that's part of what we're here to do today as well dipping in and out of different episodes that have some meaning for you that will help you make your best choices and move forward in, in learning from what's going on and what's gone wrong. And in moving forward into a better life hopefully.

Tamsin Caine  3:11  
Absolutely. Very good point about the book because I think whilst it's fantastic to listen to these podcast episodes, sometimes you might listen to a few and you might miss something and think about the book is a very comprehensive guide from from day one to moving on and planning your future. So I think that's a, that's an excellent point. Because we hadn't written that when the podcast started. So we didn't mention that episode. though. Let's, let's kick off with so the idea is, is a reboot of of our first episode. So with that, we're gonna talk about separation. So I guess there are there are a number of ways and the first and probably the one that most people think about is my spouse has told me that they're leaving, or they want us to split up. What What for you are the first things that somebody in that situation should be doing. 

Susan Leigh  4:09  
If somebody has had that bolt out the blue, and it is completely unexpected. You do sometimes get people who have been cruising along in their relationship thinking everything's kind of okay, good enough. Well, we've got kids and you know, we're both having to work hard and money might be a bit tight or, or whatever. So you kind of go into cruise control and you can start neglecting perhaps yourself and start neglecting your relationship. And there can be a lot of denial when somebody comes along and perhaps says, I don't feel the way I should or I'm not happy enough and you might think that they are having a midlife crisis or they're just a bit overwhelmed with everything else that's going on in life. Or it may be that you suspect them having an affair. There can be all sorts of different things that go through your head. Well. The first thing to do is to say, you know, is this rich grievable Do you want to retrieve it? How do you feel? And is this something that that can be talked about, because sometimes you find your partner has been feeling quite bad about things for quite some time. And it's only when it gets to the very, very end that they just can't stand anymore, I can't take it anymore I need to go. That may be for them. It's a bit too late to actually pick anything up. So it can be a time of having to sort of maybe hear some negative things about yourself, maybe start wondering what you're going to be doing next, you know, and maybe it's time to get some legal advice. But it can be a real conundrum about where we are at and is there anything we can retrieve? Does it want to be retrieved? What what do I do about this? You know, what's my part in all of this as well, I guess we have to own the fact that we may not be the same person, neither of us maybe not be the same person that we were when we first met, and then a lot of water has gone under the bridge. What do we need to do about that?

Tamsin Caine  6:00  
Yeah, absolutely. I think that's really good advice. And I think it's the it's the kind of information gathering stage, isn't it? It's not necessarily the point to like race off and file for divorce. But more kind of sit and think about what, what's next and gather some likely failed gather some legal information. At this point, is it a point that you think that what you do can help? 

Susan Leigh  6:27  
I do, because whether it's us walking away, or your partner that's walking away, either way, there are things that cause confusion, and very few people are necessarily at the stage of saying that's it, it's over, I'm finished. Often people feel guilty, they feel hurt, they feel a failure, you know, there can be a lot of things going on that perhaps needs sorting after that point. And, and sometimes people are saying, you know, I want to divorce it's over, because they want to put a rocket in the relationship and get things moving again, and see if there's any, any embers that can be ignited and turn them into some sort of relationship again. So people like myself, counsellors, therapists can be useful either for the couples counselling, even if people are wanting to break up, I've had couples come to me who sat down, and they said, we want to, we want to break them how many probably, we don't want to be rehashing and go round and round and round in circles where people betrayal and anger and frustration because of a new service. And, you know, we can be doing that for weeks on end. And, indeed, many couples do. So, either coming to see somebody like me to try to sort out what's going on in the relationship, to actually hear what each other has to say, because, for example, it's a couple I'm working with at the minute and, and she is in danger. He's had several affairs, and she's in danger every time they meet him, you know, whether together that of going over, why did you do it? What happened? How many times do you know, what did you say? Well, that happened. And, you know, and repeating all of that over and over again, gets nobody anywhere, and actually just succeeds in pushing the pair of them further apart. So going to see some of that myself means that I can referee it really, and say, Okay, let's, you know, we hit we've heard that, you know, he needs to answer some of those things for you, you're entitled to ask, but if you wanting to move forward, you've got to accept those two people in the conversation. And that means listening to the other person, as well as saying your piece, you know, and not interrupted, not second guessing what they're gonna say not jumping in not saying Oh, but hang on a minute. No justifications needed, just listening to what they say, because the other person has a point of view, too. And that's why they're there.

Tamsin Caine  8:47  
Yeah, absolutely. I think you're right. I think quite often in these situations, there is a possibility of reconciliation, isn't that if that's what both of you want? There are? There are places to go? It's not it's not necessarily let's jump in and, and move quickly. Another thing that, that I discovered that guess over the course of the last 100 episodes that we've recorded, is that a lot of the time there's one party who is emotionally much further ahead than the other app, they've been the one who's made that decision. Perhaps they made that decision six months ago, nine months ago, and they've been getting their ducks in a row. And they've been getting used to the getting their emotions in order, maybe even seeing a therapist or a counsellor during that period of time, though, for you, if it's ball up the blue, it's even more important to get that emotional support and give yourself a bit of time, isn't it? 

Susan Leigh  9:48  
Yeah, definitely. If because, as I said a minute ago, you know, it is often the case that one person has slowly been coming to the realisation that they're not happy that the song The wrongs that they is this it, you know, is this my life now, you know, mortgage kids over time, you know, to one holiday a year to some camping or something that they can't, you know, because there's no money and they can't do the things they'd like to do, and then maybe have hobbies and interests that have gone by the wayside, and they've lost a lot of friends, they may have things that they wanted to do dreams that they were going to share together. And all those have gone out the window because of various life things that have happened instead. And at the time, it seemed okay, but actually getting married at 2025, or whatever. Maybe having kids, you know, you're really talking about next 2030 years, effectively, and you're definitely middle aged, by the time the kids are going off to university, and maybe even then you're still bailing them out financially. So it can be that the whole of your life is suddenly changes in front of your eyes. And that can be quite a bit of realisation. It's not called midlife crisis for nothing. And men and women can both experienced that where they think, oh, you know, I wanted my own business, or I was going to travel the world, or we were going to different things you were going to do you know, and it's, it's sometimes tough. And actually, this is why communication is so important throughout a marriage about a partnership or relationship where you are talking about things and you're perhaps trying to find ways to make accommodations, but each other to do something that inspires and motivates you both individually, you don't have to do everything together. Sometimes learning these lessons, can maybe help retrieve a relationship or certainly be a very valuable lesson for any future things that you might be planning to do yourself. So it's a time to think about that. When you're having those conversations and you're hearing your partner's, move it moving on, and you're having to think, oh, hang on a minute, I have got to catch up. But actually, what does that involve? For me as well as the other person too?

Tamsin Caine  11:57  
Yeah, absolutely. So you can help people to think about their future, as well as, as well as recovering if you like, from, from what's been before and, and starting to think about closing that chapter if if that relationships not going to work? Which I think when we talk about divorce, we think, oh, yeah, go and see a solicitor or go and get mediator involved. Like possibly think we need someone slightly finances, but I think I think fair of you actually think I need that emotional support. And probably that's the most important thing to to get you through this divorce in in one piece, isn't it?

Susan Leigh  12:39  
Yeah, and actually, you know, not being funny can actually save quite a lot of money, because I get quite a few lawyers sending people to me, who say, you know, it's only fair, I can't really keep seeing this person, because every time they come, they spend the whole hour with me in tears, and, you know, the charging whatever the charging several 100 pounds quite often, for an hour or so session, and they're stuck in tears not able to move forward, because he can't believe what's happened or they're devastated about the whole situation. And, and so sometimes seeing a therapist, to help work through the grief and the emotional, different stages that we go through. Connection be helpful. And also you do some healing work about it all at the same time, too. So that can be really important. A really important point to make as well. 

Tamsin Caine  13:28  
Yeah, you're absolutely right. And let's be honest, and you know, lawyers do a fantastic job of dealing with the legal side of divorce. But if that's what they're qualified to do deal with the legal side of divorce, they are not in any way qualified counsellors or therapists. So spending your time trying to work through that side of things with a lawyer is not only terribly expensive, but actually they're not going to be able to provide you with the right support that you need it in that way either. 

Susan Leigh  14:01  
that's such a lot of sense as well. Definitely. Yeah. And and another thing, I mean, often, I mean, I've had people say to me, yeah, you know, at what point do you go and see a lawyer? Well, I think it's good to have your information. It's good to know where you stand, it's good to know what the steps are. I mean, to some extent, our book can help with that. But even so, seeing a loyal lawyer to get your own personal situation sorted can be really useful because you know, what you stand to lose what you're entitled to what you stand to gain all those different things that help you feel more in control. But at the same time, you know, getting the other advice you need your financial advice, you know, whether you can afford a house or mortgage or whatever, all those different parts to give you that whole knowledge is power. And it does help you feel more in control and less at the whims that you're perhaps what's actually going on around you or the threats that you've been hearing about. You'll be left with nothing and you'll be in a tent on the on the field if you're not careful. Either. thing where you perhaps do need to actually get some proper information. So you feel less out at sea and less afraid of what might happen? 

Tamsin Caine  15:08  
Yeah, and that that's the word, isn't it afraid? It's that fear. From, you know, where am I going to live? How am I going to afford to pay my bills? What am I gonna get from them? What's going to happen to the children? Those are the those are the big fears, aren't they that that we start to see in this in this situation? I wonder, I was just thinking, I don't think this is something that we covered in the first step. But we're thinking about, there is a still a slight stigma attached to being a therapist, being a counsellor in in the UK, you know, you go to the US and everyone's got a therapist, and there's no kind of stigma about it. And I think in the UK, there's a little bit more reticent to talk about it. And then just wondered if you could just give us an idea of what happens when somebody comes to see you for the first time just so that we try and remove that fear. Because, obviously, I know that you're a lovely lady, and it's not terrifying at all coming from sure our listeners will get that just from listening to but But what happens when someone comes to see for the first time? 

Susan Leigh  16:22  
Well, every session is tailored to the individual. But as a loose guide, what I normally do on a first session, I allow a couple of hours, and we spend the first hour talking about why you hear what's going on what went wrong, what you're looking for what you want to achieve. Tell me a bit about yourself, what are your experiences, your past experiences of relationships? You know, what was your parents relationship? Like, for example, you know, what are you mirroring in yourself? In your relationships? What are your expectations, because we often have traditional views that come through the call intergenerational, we often have our views that come through from the traditions of the past. So understanding ourselves is one of the big keys to go into see a therapist. And then normally after about an hour or so I say, right, well, you know, I'll do some Mason's right the way through, it seems to be what we're talking about is this and seems to me what you're feeling is that and what you're looking for is this, so we kind of agree what the agenda will be. And then normally on the first session, I will do some hip hypnotherapy. And that on the first session is often about relaxing, letting go feeling more, more positive, more calm, less tense, less stressed out, because often stress is a biggie even, you know, in a situation like this, particularly where there are so many unquantifiable is floating around, you don't know what's going on. So we work on the stress side, helping somebody relax, let go. And we maybe do a bit of, you know, like a future thing about, you know, you will start to feel healthier, happier, calmer, more in control, taking each day as it comes, you know, working through what people need to do, what's your, what could your next steps be? What might be useful for you to do between now and if you choosing to come again. And so actually helping people feel that they have got stepping stones to a future that is positive and reminding them that they don't have to do everything today, you know, you might have to do lists, that you know, find somewhere to live, you know, I don't want to lose to China, you know, I might What about the kids, you know, you know, you know, what do I tell the neighbours, all those things don't necessarily need to be done today. And so we're allowing people to feel more in control of their own timetable, and do things at their own pace, and work it through and help people also not necessarily take advice from everybody that they meet, when it can be very difficult to be with your friends. That's that whole that can be a whole minefield some people will lose some of their friends because it takes sides or the our friends not just mine and then that can be a thing but it can be also that we want to tell everybody what he's such as so and so you know, he's been so horrible and we won't guess this but you know, learning to be a little bit more circumspect with what you share who you tell what's going on? Because do you really want every time you meet your friends or your family to be saying another thing? You know what, what happened? And what did he say what did you do because everywhere you go then you can be immersed in grief and anger and frustration and all the rest of it. So try and have some places where you go where you don't necessarily talk about us all the time and you have some space just to be you and go out and have a cocktail and a laugh and maybe have a bit of fun you know go go to the gym and start running or whatever it might be where you feel a bit more in control and you get start to get touching base again with you the real you underneath all of this before all of this happens and before you start feeling rejected or unloved or lovable or whatever it might be quite a lot of different things in there that can happen at the first session where you start thinking a bit more positively about yourself and about your future. 

Tamsin Caine  19:56  
Yeah, absolutely. God, there's so much that that's brought up for me too kind of ask ask about now, I did just one thing on on hypno that that I want to mention that that is something that I know you won't be won't say yourself. I've had hypnotherapy with Susan, she is amazing. Hypnotherapy is not the same as the hypnosis that you see Paul McKenna doing on the telly, and making people quack like a duck or behave like baby or whatever. It's a serious type of therapy. And certainly, I know it works for a lot of people, it's the same with any therapy, different things for different people. But if you've not tried it, don't be scared of it. It's, it's a very, very, I found it a very deep form of relaxation, that that Susan's spoken about. So I just wanted to mention that because I know it is something that a lot of people are a bit weary about. And I'll be brutally honest cards on the table. As you know, I was incredibly weary the first time but have carried on going back for more many, many times, then so very, very strongly recommend that. On the friends thing. This is something that that I know you feel very strongly about. And you've written a fantastic blog, which is available on our website, which I would recommend that you go and check out because it is something that you you do, sometimes lose some of your friends. But I also think you sometimes find out who your real friends are about finding out who's actually there for you, when you go through a situation like this. It's the same with any sort of drama in life, you find out who your real friends are. But also, it's important. And no, this is something that you've talked about before, not to spend the whole time when you with your friends talking about the drama of your divorce, because actually that doesn't do you or them any good, do you want to expand a little bit on that, because I know that's something that you've talked about previously?

Susan Leigh  22:04  
Well, it's good to have support. And it's good to have people that you can talk to. And it's good to have people who will be horrified, put their arms around, you let you cry, let him know, let you listen to their advice, whatever it might be. And we all need outlets like that. And so that is important. But I think there comes a point where we have to start realising that we're, you know, I've heard people say, I'm even boring myself. So I don't even know if you know, because I'm talking about it that much. And it's constantly on my mind, of course it is, of course it is. But at the same time, there's space to you know, say let's go for a walk together or let's go window shop or let's go and I don't know, play, you know, somewhere or other you know the game of something, and do different things so that you have spaces in your day in your life and you we were there, it's not all about me or ours or him or her or whoever, you know that we're able to actually have some respite from it all. And I think the thing with brands as well is that, yes, you will potentially lose some because they will take sides and they'll feel bad for you. Or they might not know what to say or whatever it might be. But we also know that our friends are very good at giving advice. I think one thing about advice from friends is they, they probably will want what's best for you. But they will also have some interest in the outcome. So if you were thinking of starting afresh and moving from the north, right down to the south or something, then they might not want you to go and they might not want to lose you. So just think about that. But your friends will potentially have a vested interest in the outcome of what your decisions are going to be. They might be saying Oh, don't bother doing that or why don't you stay here or come at you know, whatever and it is it is a time where you can sort of respectfully say thank you very much I really appreciate what you're saying. Leave it with me think about it. You don't have to say get lost or go away but you can actually appreciate their input but really take your time and go away and work it out for yourself. And the other thing about printers is that sometimes as a happy medium between leaving home having to sell it and it's sold or whatever, and starting a new someplace, they may offer you a house share and I think a House share can be really really good initially after after a separation because you will have people around even if you hardly speak to them or you pass don't really cost that much. But it's good to have people there how share of some kind whether it's friends or you've just seen it advertised or it's family or whatever. It can be a little bit cheaper but it's also companionable, good to have somebody else knocking around the house for you and you don't feel so low or times when you are feeling low. There's somebody there to say Come on, honey, you know, let's have a brew and let's watch some trash TV, you know, or watch a film or something and you've got somebody there, even if you're not necessarily talking to them that much, but just good to her, and they can check in and that you're eating and that, you know, you're keeping reasonable hours and you're not getting drunk every night or whatever it might be. So that it's good to have somebody there for you, just to feel that you're you're not on your own, because it can be quite a shock for people who maybe have left the family to go away to union there with other people there, and then get partnered, get married, or whatever, you know, for some people, it might be the very first time on the road living alone. So that can be quite a shock to, particularly if you've, you're sharing access, if you've got children, you're sharing access visits, and things like that. And there are times when you are literally by yourself. So sometimes getting a house share can be a useful thing to do in the interim, until you're really clear about what you want, and you're feeling healed or ready to move on.

Tamsin Caine  25:51  
Absolutely, I think that's really good advice. Because there is there are definitely points where the whether you have children or you haven't had haven't got children being completely on your own and, and that loneliness can can really hit you hard when you're already in a in a state of an emotional low. And having somebody around, just to take your mind off, all the other things that are going on can be really useful. And how shear can be used in the situation of bird nesting. Don't if this is something we've talked about, but feel like it, it probably is. So it's something I've come across quite a lot of clients do when they've got children, particularly when the children are younger. So the children would stay in the house. So rather than them moving between mom and dad, they stay in the house and mum and dad move in and out depending on whose turn it is to look after them on that particular day. And that can give that extra stability to the children whilst you're working things out. And, and when you're not due to be in the family home perhaps staying with friends or, or having a house share is is a good option, rather than renting an additional place and having that cost whilst you're willing to take in the whole process of divorce and so on. So do think that's an excellent idea. 

Susan Leigh  27:13  
I've got I've got a couple doing that at the minute where he moved out and he did do a rent a rental. And now when he comes to the family home, she goes to his place. Yeah, so you know, it's a similar thing that you're talking about where it does cut down on the expense of but maybe having two places where you're going in the interim, while you're deciding what you're doing that there is that opportunity to give the kids stability, they can go to the same school still see their friends, you know, when everything's as normal as it possibly can be at the time and and also they're not necessarily coming across mum and dad are arguing all the time, because there can be a sort of a quite a slick handover, if you like, where one moves out and the other moves in, you know?

Tamsin Caine  27:55  
Absolutely, I mean, it's probably not something you want to do for the long term. Because moving is, is a bit of a pain, just like it's been a pain to move the kids stuff off where you tend to have to lock things which you're probably not going to do while you bed, nothing but certainly for for the first 12 months, 24 months, maybe even just just while you figure things out and get things organised, I do think it can be a really useful starting point for moving forward. So yeah, and I think it also can answer some questions about where we're gonna live. You know, that's not an immediate question that the dancer in if you've got this temporary solution, which which works well enough, for the best you can.

Susan Leigh  28:44  
Yeah, I mean, a certain amount of discretion and respect has got to be accommodated, if you're doing that, you know, you don't want to be go at, you know, going and finding your strange partners, new partner, and their stuff is all around the place or whatever, there's a certain amount of discretion and respect required, but at the same time, it is about being actually I mean, it's sometimes that doing that can be a positive way of transitioning into separation because, you know, if you meet and you just fleeting the sharing of views, you know, we're after conflicts or whatever. Tonight, all those different things you can end up speaking in a in a more humane way to each other, you know, being more, you know, you're not gonna be lovers anymore, but you can at least be mindful that each other has is playing a valuable role in your kids lives. And that is an important thing to remember. 

Tamsin Caine  29:37  
Yeah, absolutely. And in terms of other things that that come up a lot, when you see people who are in their first feelings of separation that sounds like the completely the wrong phrase, but first gone through separation, whether it's planned that they've decided to separate as a couple or whether It's been something that's both done them. What are the other things that tend to come up for them other than other than housing?

Susan Leigh  30:09  
Well, I think relationships, friends, you know, what we're doing with our friends, where we go in who keeps a gym membership, you know, all those sorts of things that you really don't necessarily think about, you know, dispersal of treasured things. You know, I want that vase. No, you're not having it. It was my you know, it was a gift from my great and that kind of thing, you know, possessions, you know, the way you look. I mean, sometimes people in the early stages of breaking up, they'll lose weight, and they'll get fitter and toned and all the rest of it. And that partner can be suddenly Who is this what's going on? Yeah. And so on, there's all sorts of little, niggly things that can actually come out. And sometimes I've had people say, it would have been easier and better for me if my partner would have actually died, because you grieve. And then you'd move on. And if you see your estranged partner suddenly getting fitter and healthier and happier, going out, going to clubs and joining trips and things, you suddenly see them living a good life, and you never did that together, that can be very, very difficult to get used to the idea of someone having a life apart from you separate from you better than they had with you. And so that is a, you know, that can be sometimes a tough one to digest as well. But we have to accept that, you know, things have transitioned, things have moved on. If it's not reconcilable, then what are we going to do? And how to how we're going to do it together?

Tamsin Caine  31:34  
Yeah, I think I think that's a really good point, because I'm not minimising at all, anybody who's who has had a partner or spouse passed away, but it in there are certain ways in which it is, it would be easier, you're not going to see them wandering down the street with a new partner, which can be really difficult. And it can mean that the grieving process can be extended because you're, you're seeing them, you're not just grieving them going, you're grieving them going, but actually entering into a new life themselves, perhaps with somebody new, as you say, perhaps changing some of the things that actually if they changed when you were together that might have improved things, which can be really, really difficult to get your head around and concept.

Susan Leigh  32:21  
Yeah, definitely. Yeah. You know, and they've got more money, perhaps, you know, if they, if the way, I mean, again, one of the couples that I worked with, he had a really, really good job. And he left and got himself some fabulous Deluxe penthouse apartment thing. And she's managing three kids trying to work and cope with the various then go into see Dad and coming back with all these fabulous gifts and things. And she's managing on a really tight budget, and that those sorts of things are very, very hard, you know, a miscellaneous array of fabulous, you know, clothes scattered all over the place. And obviously, all sorts of things happening. They're very, very difficult when you're severely limited financially. timewise, emotionally, kids wise, all those things that, you know, can be difficult. And then you see your other partners, you say swanning down the street arm in arm with some gorgeous, young person, and it's not easy. It's not easy to digest at all.

Tamsin Caine  33:20  
Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. And that actually brings me on to something that, that we probably should touch on, and that's dating. So I guess there's a temptation when, when you do separate, to leap straight into the, into the dating pool. And I guess the way that most people do that now is, is by online dating. Is that a good idea?

Susan Leigh  33:47  
Well, you know, it used to be called on the rebound. And you know, your relationship after a breakup was a rebound. And the point of that was that you would be right well, I'll I'll show him or her, you know, I'll show him or her that I still got it that I'm still sexy and fit and vibrant. And, you know, can go to clubs or bars or whatever it might be where you're tending to, perhaps hope to meet people or go indeed go online. I think the thing is, it's, it is, again, about being quite tentative about being wary of some of the fears that may be about online dating, you know, you don't necessarily know what you're getting. When it turns up. It's not always what you thought you were getting. Some people are married. Some people are looking to scam other people. So you know, it's still keeping your intelligent brain working, where you are, you know, trusting your gut, you know, you're being a bit insightful or being a bit careful about what you say about what you give away in terms of information or anything else. So, you know, yes, absolutely. Get out there and feel fit and active and test the waters but, you know, every situation has pros and cons. And so being on your own For a time can be quite useful in the sense that you get to know yourself better, you get to know what you're like, you get to know what you want, you get to know what you're prepared to compromise what you're prepared to make allowances for. But you know, those things that that information can take a little while to assimilate, when you're just diving back and wanting to show you, your ex partner that you're attractive and everything, you know, but just think about it, you know, sometimes being on your own, what am I in for pets, things that I love, is there's no lonelier place on the planet than in a loveless relationship. And I still adhere to that, I think that's really true. There's no lonelier place than being with somebody who's yawning when you're speaking or looking over your head or tapping the floor or metaphorically saying or whatever, shifting that position because they're irritated or whatever, and you go in a room and they go out, you know, the, the body distance between the Power View is getting bigger and bigger and bigger. So, you know, sometimes just just thinking, Okay, I'm on my own, I'm gonna have a little bit of time to stay in bed and eat toast, to watch what what's on TV, you know, to do things that, you know, see, you know, like a star in the whole bed, you know, all those different things that we can do on our own, are really great, you know, and appreciating those, you know 

Tamsin Caine  36:18  
Yeah, I think you're absolutely right. And I think some of it about taking a bit of time, I know that I have friends who have left quite quickly into the dating pool again and gone on online date. And, and, yeah, maybe had a bit of fun, but fairly quickly realised, actually, I'm not ready for this yet. This is not, this was about having a bit of fun. This wasn't about entering, trying to find a serious relationship again, because I'm not there. I'm not in that headspace yet. And sometimes, as you say, taking a bit of time is, is incredibly valuable thing to do and can can really help future relationships about thinking about what did go wrong, and what was my part in in that, and trying to work on yourself a bit and find out who you are, but also work on yourself so that you're in a, in a better emotional space as well. I think that's, that's incredibly valuable. You won't believe this, Susan, but we are nearing the end of our time together. Amazingly.

Susan Leigh  37:28  
Let me just share a little story with you. I think this is a true story. One of my clients said. You know, I'm on my own, and my friend came around. Shortly after, she was going through some really difficult time with a husband who was incredibly wealthy. I mean, they've got this fabulous plot of land, he built this fantastic house, it won top prizes, design prizes, wonderful, wonderful house, and I was on my own and this friend of mine came around to see me. And she was walking around my house and I'm thinking Guardian is compared to hers. It's a little tiny thing. So she was walking around and she went, you know what, Susan, I really envy you. And I said, why? You know, what have you me for just this, this is all yours. And I thought, You know what, she's got this fabulous house, it's multi millionaire lifestyle, you know, brand new car, Mercedes, personal plated Mercedes every year holidays all over the place, you know, three or four fabulous holidays every year. And she's marrying me. And I just thought, that is a really thought provoking aspect of what the work that we do, where we have to sort of change our perspective and actually realised actually, what one person is looking at, might not be the same that we're looking at, you know, and it was, it's interesting sometimes to just think, actually, even if, I mean, this is one thing, I will say to my people, when you're, you know, even if you've moved into a bed centre, you've got one room in somebody's house, make your mark on that place. You know, you don't have to spend a lot of money, put your bright pictures on the walls, get some rugs or rows, or cushions, get a bunch of hours of flowers and just have them in there. Put your mark on that place because some of those things you can take with you if you do move. But also you're making that place feel home so that every time you come in and shut the door, you can exhale, sit down and go. This is mine, even if it isn't only for a short period of time, it's mine. And I think doing things like that can make a difference. And when we move you can pick up the costumes and the throw and the pictures and take them someplace else. But it's putting your mark on the place and claiming it for a period of time and I think that is a really lovely thing to do. Especially when you're newly single and feeling it. 

Tamsin Caine  39:44  
That's fabulous end to our expo today I'm not even going to ask you anything else isn't because that was a perfect, perfect place to end our episode together. massive thank you to you for joining me for this special episode. I think there's been a lot valuable things that they that I'm sure our listeners will benefit from. Thank you for listening. You'll hear us again on our next episode. Thank you.

Susan Leigh  40:08  
Thank you

Tamsin Caine  40:14  
I hope you enjoyed the episode of the Smart Divorce podcast. If you would like to get in touch please have a look in the show notes for our details or go onto the website Also if you are listening on Apple podcasts or on Spotify and you wouldn't mind leaving us a lovely five star review. That would be fantastic. I know that lots of our listeners are finding this is incredibly helpful in their journey through separation divorce and dissolving a civil partnership. Also, if you would like some further support, we do have Facebook group now. It's called 'Separation divorce and dissolution UK.' Please do go on to Facebook, search up the group and we'd be delighted to have you join us. The one thing I would say is do please answer their membership questions. Okay, have a great day and take care!

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