How Separate with Dignity

How do you end a relationship well?  How do you cope with the breakdown of communication, the lowered levels of self belief and the loss of love that once filled your life?  A separation of ways is physical, psychological and very emotional.  But when financial matters arise not only is there a spike in the emotional pain but a drop in value and self worth, as both sides justify their own hurt.

This can lead to toxic behaviour and bitter attitudes.  It is felt through the unguarded disrespectful communication patterns that hurl blame, guilt and shame. In cases where there is silent treatment, a shutting down or shutting out of the other partner, assumptions and expectation breed a hostility that just says ‘you’re not worthy’.

Yet we know this is not the truth. It can be hard to accept that the person may be experiencing levels of emotional pain that disables their ability to cope or express what they are going through and it is in these moments we must have and show compassion, and bucket loads of it for as long as it takes so that it can end well and the healing can commence.

I recently interviewed a family law solicitor who provided me with some of the most sensible and practical information that showed not only a greater level of understanding by solicitors that I’ve ever given them credit for, but genuine wisdom in trying to get both parties to ‘agree’ and stay on the same page.

Separate with Dignity by making Financial Settlement SIMPLE

Whilst we all have personality flaws, bad habits and annoying traits we generally accept each other as humans. Our values are tied up in our effort, contribution and time and these are tested when we have to put a dollar value on them.   Attitudes of entitlement and protective behaviour is the shift that becomes obvious and hurtful and lacks the validation of co-contributing to the empire you both built in your own ways.

‘The reasons we fall in love with someone is often the reasons why we break up’

This financial loss and emotional pain unfortunately becomes a cost of the marriage or union and will subside if just one of the partners is capable of holding this space.  So today I want to explain the current options in dealing with your separation that has the potential to resolve points of contention, shed light onto process and procedure and dispel the myths of entitlement and protection of assets including the children’s.

The end of a relationship or marriage is always sad for both parties and any children, although they may not feel it at the same time.  Some grieve during the marriage and at separation find resolution. They are ready to move on. Many end with a bang after months of trying to ‘fix’ the things that are tearing it apart.  A few don’t feel anything until months have past and they miss the life they had created with that person, finally coming to a place where they accept they took it all for granted and that it can’t be salvaged.  Some find separation is the space they need to find themselves away from the roles and responsibilities they didn’t even know they had taken on. Few find there is a new path to travel together. So  staying on the same page during a separation is difficult and there are many distractions and coping mechanisms that start to play out.


As the ‘game’ begins it will be important to hold space for each other to deal with the emotions they have or don’t have.  Depending on how each partner copes, there needs to be room for difficult conversations, hurt and anger. Remembering they are not angry at you, the anger is derived from the loss, fear and ultimately the stories of the breakdown from acknowledging their 50% share in the failure.  I know through my own separations I have faced the difficulty of expressing myself, holding up boundaries and discussing the issues like the responsible adult I thought I was.   I would often revert back to the 5 year old girl that didn’t get what she wanted, the way she wanted it and in the time frame I wanted.   And there in lies the problem, I wasn’t the only one in that relationship and my lesson was to understand that you don’t always get want you want – and that things actually turned out better because of it.

Now whether there was a failure in speaking up and saying what you wanted to say out of fear of loosing the relationship or rocking the boat, you need to own whatever that was. Or perhaps it was the passive approach to boundaries. Ultimately with the power to create a great family, marriage, friendship, relationship and the life you wanted comes the responsibility of every decision or failure to make one.  Discovering the power to design your life is challenging and required your partner to be supportive and understanding, with separation that will dissipate yet you have the capacity to still have that despite being on your own journey.

You don’t know what the future holds, and that’s exciting.  Neither party has the right to hold the other one back, emotionally or financially, this is domestic abuse and disrespectful behaviour.  But if you are now on your own paths, accepting where it is at is essential and if you have children it means this is not the end.  A great strategy given to me by a financial advisor to women rebuilding their life after divorce and a lawyer friend is a the Financial Settlement ‘Snap Shot’.  Its also a really handy tool to use in healthy flourishing relationships, and looks a lot like the review of a corporate plan!

The Formula is simple yet holds complex calculations that need to be discussed and agreed upon.   As money conflict is usually caused by different beliefs around money, it’s value and

The Formula for a Financial Separation is based on what the Family Law recognise as the reasonable division of assets at that point in time.

1.Assets brought into the relationship or marriage.

2. Financial and Non Financial Contributions during the relationship, marriage, separation up until the date of the agreement.

3. Future Needs.

‘It is both of you against the problem or issue, not you against the other.  This is the same in separation. The problem is the respectful untangling of the marriage.  The issue is how to do this without exacerbating the stress, fear and insecurity you are both feeling.

For a more detailed explanation down load the attached document that includes not all but most the nitty gritty explanations.  Seek legal assistance or financial advice and be kind to yourself.  Separation and Divorce are not just a financial loss, it comes with an emotional and psychological cost that can play havoc with your self worth.  Important to remember you can rebuild from wherever you are, it will just look different and you will come to love what that is.

Stay positive, be reasonable and find peace in accepting that nothing is sorted until it’s sorted.  you are worth more than any asset pool, you have more to give than know and opportunities will continue to be there if you say yes please………Financial Settlement SIMPLE



Toolkit5 Reasons to FIND YOUR IDENTITY