Can you save your marriage or relationship even though you have separated?
Yes, absolutely, is my answer (I say this with conviction because I have seen some of my clients do it...see below).
If there is love still between you and you both want to make a go of your relationship again, there is no reason why you cannot make it work.
Granted, you will want to be working on the patterns of behaviour that you both can fall into that led to the separation in the first place.Just because you both think you want to be together isn't enough to make a relationship work that has already broken down before.
New awareness and information are needed to help you see more clearly where and why things went wrong.
From here, you can start showing up with new, healthier behaviours that won't take you down the same old path of dysfunction.
Also with a greater willingness to take responsibility for your behaviours, ways of thinking and your feelings you can put yourself in a much stronger position to build a 'new' relationship with your partner.
The good thing is you already know each other and whilst starting again may feel scary, you have a shared feeling that your relationship is worth fighting for.
I have seen this happen to some of my clients. One couple in particular, had been living separately for a good few months before they came to me for support with their relationship. They had decided to separate to give themselves some space and time to think through what they really wanted. The conflict had got too much and didn't want to subject their child to any further distress.
This time apart definitely helped them take a step back and see the bigger picture. They had started to get on better when they came into contact, but they were very hesitant to jump back into a relationship with each other for obvious reasons.
This is when they came across my work online and got in touch.
They committed to a programme of work not knowing where they would end up. It was a leap of faith and it felt like there was a lot at stake.
What if it didn't work out, would it mean heartache and pain all over again?
Would they get their hopes up to then have them dashed again?
The truth here, is that is was always going to be a risk. We never know what is going to happen in the future.
All they could do was back themselves and see where it took them.
I remember the gentleman saying to me six weeks into their relationship coaching programme "we have found out more about each other in the last six weeks than we have done after six years of marriage".
For me this highlights how lacking in real connection most relationships actually are. We are not taught how to connect in a way where we can truly hear each other. Add to the mix the stresses of trying to bring up a child and it is not surprising that so many relationships suffer.
As our work continued, my clients not only got to know each other better, they become much more aware of themselves. They started to realise what patterns of behaviour were not serving them or their marriage.
They realised that they were playing a role in the dysfunctional patterns in ways they did not see. Having this knowledge and information helped them get to the point where they were able to move back in together and create a far happier and healthier family life.
With all of my clients, I will at some point, tell them: "you are playing a part in this loop of dysfunction. Your part is serving to keep it alive".
It is a bit of a 'gut punch' in many ways because it is far easier to stay in blame and hide behind the idea that your life would be so much easier if your partner changed. However, when you take the responsibility required it is amazing how quickly things can change for the better. It is also extremely empowering to realise that you have more power than you have believed up until now.
The biggest challenge is to rise above the fear of being in your full power. We have all been taught to fear our power and to give it away to others or to situations. When we start claiming it back, our fear of failing comes up as well as our fear of being rejected.
The thing to ask yourself here, is that if your partner does decide to reject you when you are showing up as your true self, would you really want to be with them? Yes, it might be a painful experience, but you would then be in a position to move on and find someone who is a much better match for you. However, like I have said, if there is love still between you, you can find a way to make it work.
Also, if you mess up, you always have the chance to put things right again. With the new framework of relating that I give my clients, you are able to navigate any mistakes and turn them into growth and learning. With the new tools you will receive, you and your partner will become have greater empathy for yourselves and each other.
When it comes down to it, this requires a decision from you. A decision to go all in and learn more about yourself, so that you can be a better partner. If your partner is doing this too, you will be giving yourselves the best chance possible of turning things round for the long-term. The fact that you have previously separated can become a thing of the past and is in many ways irrelevant.
If you would like to talk to me about getting support for your marriage or relationship you can book a 30 minute complimentary consultation here.