What Advice Do Marriage Counselors Give for Rebuilding Relationships Post-Separation?


    What Advice Do Marriage Counselors Give for Rebuilding Relationships Post-Separation?

    In the quest to mend the bonds of a relationship post-separation, we've gathered insights starting with a family law attorney who emphasizes the importance of cooperative parenting plans. Alongside expert advice, we've also compiled six additional answers that range from practical strategies to emotional wisdom. From the foundational step of maintaining open communication to the closing note of creating positive shared experiences, here's a mosaic of recommendations for couples eager to rebuild.

    • Opt for Cooperative Parenting Plans
    • Reset Expectations Gradually
    • Maintain Open Communication
    • Invest in Individual Therapy
    • Establish Clear Boundaries
    • Embrace the Art of Forgiveness
    • Create Positive Shared Experiences

    Opt for Cooperative Parenting Plans

    Avoiding a contested divorce is the key to a cooperative post-divorce relationship. Working with both parties as a divorce mediation attorney for 20 years, I have helped hundreds of couples craft parenting plans that allow them to divorce amicably and then co-parent with minimal drama following the divorce. Crafting a parenting arrangement during divorce that is collaborative and negotiated in mediation is a huge key for people being able to co-parent without getting courts involved and keeping the fighting manageable. When couples divorce through the courts in a contested process, 45% end up back in court after the divorce. That's because the courts are imposing parenting plans onto the parties, and there is always resistance from one or both, as there is no desire to go along with something they didn't want. A couple in mediation crafts their own plan and creates their own arrangements together with a parenting expert like myself. By having a say in the way the plan came about, there is a dramatic drop in post-divorce litigation among mediated settlements. Less than 15% end up in litigation after divorce. Please link to my site if you wish to use me as a source. I'm happy to provide additional information. Scott Levin

    Scott Levin
    Scott LevinFamily law attorney, San Diego Divorce Mediation & Family Law

    Reset Expectations Gradually

    As a relationship coach, one recommendation I often give to couples rebuilding after a separation is to approach it slowly and reset expectations. A client couple, Mark and Jen, reunited after being apart for 8 months but struggled because they rushed back into the same dysfunctional patterns. My advice was to take things step by step—date each other again, don't immediately cohabitate, and rebuild emotional intimacy before physical intimacy. Reset the foundation rather than springing back into the relationship that led to the separation. The goal is to reestablish trust, communication, and realistic expectations at a pace that feels safe for both partners.

    Kurt Roswell
    Kurt RoswellCreator, DateLoveWed.com

    Maintain Open Communication

    Marriage counselors often emphasize the importance of maintaining open, honest, and consistent communication as a pillar for rebuilding a fractured relationship. This means actively listening to one's partner and expressing thoughts and feelings without fear of judgment. Regular conversations can help prevent misunderstandings and enable both partners to stay connected on an emotional level.

    Such clear communication fosters trust and is an indispensable step towards reconciliation. Make today the day you start a conversation that champions openness and truth.

    Invest in Individual Therapy

    A common piece of advice from marriage counselors is the value of seeking individual therapy to foster personal growth. When both partners dedicate time to understanding their own emotions and behaviors through therapy, it can aid in healing their joint relationship. Self-awareness is a crucial aspect for each individual to prevent past mistakes and to contribute positively to the relationship's future.

    Investing in personal development can provide fresh perspectives and improved coping strategies. Take the step towards self-improvement for the benefit of your relationship.

    Establish Clear Boundaries

    Setting clear boundaries is another critical suggestion from relationship experts. After a separation, respecting each other's personal space can create a healthy environment where both individuals can feel secure and independent. This space allows each person to reflect and understand their own needs and limits.

    Boundaries act as guidelines that help couples navigate the complexities of their relationship without overstepping or creating further tension. Establish your personal boundaries and communicate them to your partner to pave the way for a respectful partnership.

    Embrace the Art of Forgiveness

    Marriage counselors often advise couples to concentrate on the art of forgiveness. Dwelling on who is to blame keeps the focus on past hurt rather than on mending the present and building a future. Forgiveness is about letting go of grudges to clear the path towards healing.

    It can free both partners from the weight of past conflicts, enabling a new start. Choose to forgive and let this be the foundation for your renewed bond.

    Create Positive Shared Experiences

    Experienced therapists suggest that couples should deliberately create positive shared experiences to strengthen their bond. Engaging in activities both enjoy can reignite feelings of companionship and love. These shared moments can act as reminders of the joy that the relationship once brought to each other's lives.

    Positive experiences can be building blocks for a happier future together. Find time to enjoy an activity together and let the good times help heal old wounds.