Ending a marriage is never easy, no matter how amicable the relations. You may not think it possible to separate from your husband in a nice way, but there are steps you can take to soften the blow. An amicable separation will make dealing with finances and children easier. If you like and respect your husband, combine honesty and understanding when broaching the subject of separation.
Prepare for what is likely to be a difficult, emotional conversation. Think carefully about what you are going to say and how you are going to say it. Discuss it with a close friend whose opinion you trust. Consider how your husband is likely to react and prepare appropriate responses.
Arrange to meet your husband in a private place at a time that is convenient for both of you. Make sure you are not going to be disturbed or distracted. Set aside plenty of time for this conversation.
Ask your husband if he has an idea about what you are going to tell him and listen to his response. Confirm that you wish to separate if your husband is already aware of your feelings. Explain your reasons, but avoid unnecessary justifications or accusations. Get straight to the point, especially if your husband has no idea why you asked for the meeting. Tell him you want to separate and explain the reasons for your decision.
Brace yourself for a strong reaction. Your husband may shout, burst into tears, argue with you or try to change your mind. Avoid an argument, even if he says hurtful things. Remember that he may be hurting. Take any put downs with a pinch of salt. Let him get his point across.
Remain calm even if your husband is saying hurtful things or accusing you of things you have not done. Treat him with kindness and respect and accept that there is nothing you can do to make him feel better.
Give your husband time to digest what you have told him. Stay with a friend or relative for a couple days to give him space. Arrange to meet again to discuss the practicalities of moving on with your separate lives.
- Never end a relationship by telephone, text message or via a third party. Put yourself in your husband's shoes and think about how you would feel if he was the one who wanted to separate. Try to treat him the way you would want to be treated.
- Arrange to meet a close friend after you have told your husband you want to separate from him. Even if the separation is your choice, you may still be upset about the end of your marriage. Having a good support network in place will help you through it.
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