Marriage 101: Separated but working on it

By: Lisanne Anderson Email
By: Lisanne Anderson Email

Marriage is hard, no one can dispute that. What happens when a couple needs some space? What are the rules of separated, but working on it? Licensed Professional Counselor Barbara Roland joined Lisanne this morning with "the rules."

"Controled Separation"
- Lee Raffel, Marriage Therapist, Wisconsin

1) Know the whys: You can't fix something unless you know what's wrong.

2) Set ground rules: Who lives where? Does someone sleep in a separate bedroom? Set a time to work on your marriage where no one dates and no one files for divorce.

3) Understand your needs: Ask yourself what you hope to get out of the separation. Are there issues of your own you need to deal with? How do you realistically expect him/her to change? How will you change?

4) No surprises: Make sure your spouse knows you are considering a separation before you put any exit plans in place, or before he or she hears it from someone else.

5) Don't forget the kids: Explain to your children you're taking a break. Don't make any promises.

6) Listen to learn: When you're ready to talk, try not to interrupt or argue. Don't make a contest of "who is more responsible." Instead think of solutions.

Marriage 101 airs every Wednesday morning on First News AM. If you miss something on First News AM, you can always catch it on at or by clicking 'First News AM' in the menu at the top of any page.

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