While being separated in marriage is not something you probably want, it has benefits that may surprise you. According to Dr. Tina Tessina of WebMD, it is actually healthy for couples to spend time apart. You may be struggling if you are left at home and your spouse is away on business, since managing a household is much more difficult to do without support. Having children to take care of further complicates the situation, as raising them alone can prove to be a major challenge. However, instead of wishing your spouse would return right away, take some time to appreciate the benefits that being temporarily separated has to offer.
Appreciation For Your Spouse
Being away from your spouse for an extended period of time may help you realize how much you appreciate him. Instead of taking him for granted the next time you two are reunited, you will be increasingly aware of the burden he lifts when he is around. WebMD reports that separation from your spouse heightens your appreciation for him, almost as if you are on a mini-honeymoon. Furthermore, communication skills are often sharpened, as you must learn how to communicate effectively from afar.
Reinforced Sense of Self
Being separated from your spouse can leave you with a stronger sense of who you are and what interests you as an individual. The Associated Relationship and Marriage Counselors of Sydney report that couples who are too intertwined are at risk of co-dependence, which can be damaging to a person. By spending time apart, you are forcing yourself to re-examine your identity and increase your capacity to function outside of your relationship.
A Lesson in Priorities
Being separated in marriage can teach you a lesson about what your priorities are. WebMD reports that couples who spend time apart learn not to fret over the small issues their marriage brings and, instead, focus on the bigger picture of the relationship. Every moment spent together is important, and a small problem that could potentially escalate into a fight tends to die out before getting out of hand.
Learn to Be Alone
Spending time apart from your spouse will likely teach you how to enjoy being alone, since you have so much time without her that you must learn to manage. Dr. Debby Herbenick reports in "Psychology Today" that learning to balance your time between time spent alone and time spent together as a couple can lead to a more satisfying relationship. Ask yourself what kind of time you would like to yourself, using your time apart from each other as an example. Your time together will be more valuable, and you will also have learned the benefits of being able to keep yourself busy.
Kristen Moutria has a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Evangel University. She is currently pursuing her Master of Arts in education from the University of Nebraska.
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