Relations between you and your partner have gone sour. You have decided that the time has come to end your marriage. However, Christmas is nearly here so for the sake of your children or families, you will wait until after the festivities to separate.
It is easy to slip into lounging around on the settee, eating and watching films at this time of year. However, these are likely to be the times that are most awkward. It is a good idea to have things planned, even if it is just going for a walk or taking the kids to the park.
At this time of year, there are lots of invitations to work events, parties, nights out, meals with friends. When everything is going well, arrangements for who is staying in to look after the children can be a cause of friction. When there are already problems in your relationship, negotiations are even more difficult. Try to stay calm. It is often hard to see the other person’s point of view but try to put yourself in their shoes. If possible, make it fair.
Attending family get-togethers when you know that you are separating is incredibly difficult. It is important to remember why you are doing this. Take a deep breath. Don’t get drawn into arguments. Try to ignore any unpleasant or dismissive comments from your future ex.
Struggling to cope
You may be finding it difficult to wait until after the festivities are over. There are many people who can help. You may feel that talking to a friend helps or a Divorce and Separation group on Facebook where it’s people you don’t know. If things begin to really get on top of you, you may wish to contact a counsellor, such as Susan Leigh or even the Samaritans. Whatever you do, talk to someone, there is plenty of help available.
You make it through Christmas and New Year but what happens now. It is a good idea to arrange to meet to discuss the next steps and plan where you go from here. I would suggest that you meet somewhere outside your home, such as a coffee shop or hotel lobby. This may be easier said than done if you are in different places emotionally or if you struggle to speak together calmly.
If you enjoyed this, there is more help for coping with Christmas from Susan Leigh.
Tamsin Caine works with divorcing couples and individuals to help them to sort out their finances fairly and amicably. She helps them to work out what they want from their future lives and the steps they need to take to get it. She is a Chartered Financial Planner and founder of Smart Divorce. Tamsin can help at any stage of the divorce process. If you would like to arrange a free initial meeting, or just have a question, please get in touch either by phoning 07975 922766 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.