Spouses who are in a troubled relationship may decide to live separately while continuing to reside under the same roof. This trial separation gives them time to cool off and decide whether their marriage can be revived if given a second chance. To separate from your husband while residing in the same house you can do the following things:
- Communicate transparently
- Create separate areas
- Set the rules
- Minimize the impact of the separation on the children
- Set the timeline
- Start the process of separation
Marriages can get into trouble for a variety of reasons, such as extramarital affairs, addiction, emotional neglect, incompatibility, and more. Sometimes spouses may decide to separate while continuing to live in the same house to give their marriage a second chance, or because they may be facing financial difficulties or having familial obligations that they must fulfill together. Whatever the reason may be, here is the recommended course of action to take in such situations.
1. Communicate Transparently
When spouses are going through a rough patch in marriage and are not on good terms with each other, living together under the same roof may not be a pleasant experience. So, the first thing that they must do in a trial separation is to communicate frankly and discuss the separation threadbare so that there is no unpleasantness during the process.
Financial matters, including children-related expenses, must be discussed and the spouses should agree on whether each spouse is responsible for his/her own expense or if money will change hands (and if so, how, and how much). The daily chores and responsibilities too should be assigned right at the beginning. The spouses should also pledge to respect each other’s privacy during the trial separation. Negotiation and compromise may be required if you want to make the trial separation a success.
2. Create Separate Areas
Ideally, the spouses should divide the house – for example, the sleeping places can be separated or the house can be divided or redesigned into two independent units.
3. Set The Rules
Rules should be set at the beginning. For example:
- Whether the spouses can date other people during the separation?
- If not, whether they will engage in physical intimacy during the separation?
- What are the boundaries that a spouse cannot cross?
- How will finances and other assets (a car, for example) be shared?
- Is the goal of separation to hopefully reunite? Or, have the spouses separated because one spouse is waiting to save up some cash or fulfill a family obligation before moving into a new home?
Setting rules on matters like these can give the spouses adequate privacy and liberty to do their own thing while contemplating the marriage.
4. Minimize The Impact Of The Separation On The Children
You need to discuss and finalize things like:
- Which parent will make the decisions for the children? Or, will both discuss and decide for the children?
- How will you communicate the trial separation to the children?
- Will the children feel safe and secure during the separation? If not, how will you make them feel secure?
- Which spouse will attend to the children and on what days of the week?
- How will the children spend time with the parents during this period?
- Will the family have meals together, as it used to earlier?
- How will the spouses collaborate to ensure that life goes on as usual for the children?
There may be other finer points to discuss on how to minimize and resolve the impact of separation on your children depending upon the circumstances of your case.
5. Set the Timeline
The goal of a trial separation is mostly about reconciliation – in some cases, it may be about accumulating some money or finishing up a familial obligation before moving out. You need to establish a precise timeline for the trial separation period and go about it with a professional attitude.
6. Start The Process of Separation
After discussing issues, it’s time to move from theory to practice and start the separation process and check if its goals are being achieved. As time passes, it will become clear whether the separation under the same roof is successful or not. Be ready for the best – and the worst that could happen.