Separation sometimes leads to divorce, but in other cases, it can actually strengthen a relationship. It can give a couple time to work out how they feel about each other and establish some truths about themselves as individuals rather than as part of a couple. in fact, research indicates that 80 percent of married couples will separate, and then get back together at some point during their marriage, according to 2013 information provided by the Shelby Counseling Associates website. So keep in mind that if you are working to restore your relationship following a separation, you're not alone.
Tell your husband you want to reconcile. Ask him if he is willing to give the marriage another go. Suggest couples counseling to help you both deal with any issues that are preventing you from committing to the relationship. Ask trusted friends or your family physician to refer you to a licensed professional in your area.
Spend sufficient time addressing the issues that caused you to separate from your husband in the first place, advises the Shelby Counseling Associates website. Don't be tempted to rush things because you don't want to be alone, or because you're scared that your husband will change his mind. Failure to resolve the underlying problems is likely to lead to another separation or divorce.
Work on re-establishing a friendship with your husband before sharing a bed again. Depending on how long you're separated, you may have a lot of catching up to do. Share any new hobbies or interests with your husband, and find out what he has been spending time doing while you were apart. Get to know each other again.
Set realistic expectations concerning your reconciliation. Don't expect everything to be perfect. Carry on with couples' counseling as long as you need it. Make sure you both know what needs to change for the marriage to succeed this time around. Ask each other what aspects of the relationship you feel requires improvement, what elements of your life you need to be re-evaluate -- like financial commitments or parenting responsibilities -- and what you would each like the other person to do differently, suggests psychologist Guy Winch, Ph.D. in a June 2011 Psychology Today article. Spend time focusing on the positive aspects of your relationship too. Discuss what you miss most about each other while living apart and reveal your fondest memories of your time together prior to the separation.
- Establish a strong support system to keep your spirits up and provide the comfort and security you need while trying to piece your marriage back together.
- Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images