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Breaking up with an intimate partner is never easy.
There’s so much emotion, stress, sometimes anger and other really hard to handle emotions. Things can often dissolve into screaming matches, leaving both of you withered and worn out afterwards.
However, break-ups don’t always have to be bitter and twisted.
There’s actually a few things you can do to ensure that your relationship ends in a healthy, adult way. Let’s unpack this a bit more.
Contacting a Professional
Sometimes, you need the learned advice of someone whose job it is to manage breakups. That’s why consulting a family lawyer in Melbourne is a good idea. A family lawyer knows all the legal ins and outs of divorce and de facto separation.
It can be good to have one on board, especially if there are kids in the picture, or if you share ownership of property and assets. It’s advisable that each of you seek independent legal advice so you can both get the best outcome that is right for you.
You can sometimes get so caught up in the break-up that you forget yourself completely. It’s super important to maintain a decent level of self-care throughout the process. This will look different for everybody, but basically you should continue doing whatever it is you do to unwind, relax and de-stress.
For some that may be a hot bath.
For others it may be an hour-long run. Others still might want to go out and catch a concert or show. Whatever it is, don’t deny yourself some time for you.
If you have kids…
This is a tough one.
It really depends on the age of your children. Kids can easily internalize their parents separation and come to believe that it’s somehow their fault that mum and dad aren’t together anymore. Try to explain to them, in language they’d understand, that you still love them very much and that it’s not their fault.
Be honest and upfront with them, keeping in mind there may be some things that they can process better when they’re a bit older, too.
You’ll need to communicate with your ex throughout the break-up, especially if you’re living together or sharing other space in your life. Try to avoid anger, hostility or passive aggression and instead keep thing short, simple and courteous. Be honest and upfront and you’ll find that you can come to compromise, which is our next step.
All break-ups involve compromise.
That boxed set of the TV series that you both love – who’s going to take it? What about your favourite bar? Who gets to keep going there on Friday after work? Try and keep your communication open and reach some compromises about sectioning off aspects of that life that you’ve built together throughout the years. You may have some losses, but so will the other party.
Avoid the blame game
We can’t stress this enough.
In some cases where infidelity is involved, it can be really easy to point the finger and blame the other. This achieves nothing. For a healthy break-up you need to avoid blaming your ex for everything. The fact of the matter is that your relationship is over.
Even if it was their fault, there’s other more constructive things you could be doing (see self-care tips above), to work through the break-up in an adult way. Also, try not to be too hard on yourself.
There you have it
So make some time for yourself to look after yourself, contact a family law professional, be courteous and kind in your communication and expect to come to some compromises. And oh, don’t point the finger too much, simple!