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My relationship has broken down. What do I do now?

By , on Thursday May 25, 2017 at 9:36 am

Actions to take when your relationship breaks down

The breakdown of a relationship or marriage is not easy for anyone to deal with. Emotions run high and confusion sometimes reigns. Before rushing to take action, it is important to remember you need time to come to terms with what is happening and you should not take major steps for example, putting the house on the market until you are both calm and in the right frame of mind to discuss such matters.

If you have children they are likely to be your primary concern, especially how best to break the news to them. Ideally, this should be done together, in an age appropriate way. They need to understand that they are still loved by you both, that they will be kept safe and secure and that they have nothing to worry about. You are separating or divorcing each other, not your children.

Talking to a solicitor at an early stage just to understand what steps you should or shouldn’t be taking is of course something I would advise. By this I don’t mean that if your marriage falls apart on Friday, you should be speaking to a solicitor to start divorce proceedings by Monday. Not at all. I am suggesting an initial discussion so that you can understand what sort of things you need to think through. Then you can prepare for the steps you might need to take.

Fear of the unknown is possibly the worst type of fear and I find that many people are frightened because they just don’t know what is likely to happen. Talking to an experienced family solicitor at an early stage can allay some of these fears, which are often unfounded. It will also ensure that you are provided with accurate information and advice at an early stage.

The support of friends and family during a relationship breakdown is essential. They can provide a much-needed shoulder to cry on, a sounding board for upset, anger and frustration and support to get through the worst of the emotional or practical aspects of separation.

Unfortunately, they can also unwittingly, and albeit with the best of intentions, give you incorrect advice based upon their own experiences or third hand knowledge. By all means chat to friends and family but be very careful about taking any actions or indeed setting your own expectations of what might happen next based on their experience or opinion. Only an experienced family lawyer can take account of the law and how it might apply in your circumstances.

Most divorce and family lawyers offer a free initial consultation to consider your situation and put you in possession of the legal facts. Take advantage of this and remove some of the worry and uncertainty.

Alison Ratchford
Divorce & family lawyer, Warwick

Blog Author - Alison Ratchford

Alison RatchfordAlison Ratchford

Alison is a divorce and family lawyer based in Warwick. She has a reputation for giving practical family law advice to her clients and has a natural ability to empathise with her clients and their difficult situations.


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