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How to split but remain a family?

(15 Posts)
nrv0us Wed 16-Sep-15 14:22:08

I am curious to hear from people who have divorced but found ways to remain a family. This may sound contradictory, but I mean that my DW and I certainly have our differences (which may prove insurmountable) but we are very committed parents and my hope is that if we do separate then we can try to preserve a family feel, even if we no longer live together.

Maybe I am expecting the impossible, but I thought I would ask you lot and see if the question resonated with anyone.

BeCarefulWithThat Wed 16-Sep-15 14:41:58

It resonates with me. We have been separated for a year. We have so far done the DC's birthdays together, occasionally eat meals together (although this has lessened) and have more or less free access to each other's homes. We strive to be really good friends and the DC see us having a cuppa and chat together. We often do the DC's bedtime together. I can't pretend it's always easy though. Sometimes, feelings run high.

nrv0us Wed 16-Sep-15 14:55:03

That kind of arrangement sounds ideal -- involvement and collaboration and meals together, amid the separation. Must make the transition a little easier? How old are your DCs?

twirlypoo Wed 16-Sep-15 15:01:00

My situation is different as my sons dad left when I was pregnant so he had never known us as a couple, but when he visits (about once a month) we make an effort for ds to see us chatting, hugging hello / goodbye etc. We go for the odd meal all together, and at Christmas and birthday we always take ds out for the day together.

Oh! I also make sure ds has a photo of the 3 of us taken together at least once a year (usually christmas)

We don't have a conventional family, and by God sometimes it takes some effort and I have to bite my tongue, but over all I think it's what's best for ds in our situation so we keep on going. Good luck!

ohnocourtingdd Wed 16-Sep-15 15:02:15

The way my DexH and I split up was that we sat down and discussed everything. It does depend on the reason for the split. In our case there was no-one else on either side, we just decided that we were not 'in love' with each other and wanted different things in life.

The rules we came up with was that we did not bad mouth each other to our families so that they did not have to take sides. To this day, 16 years after our divorce, I still see his family as much as mine. When he came to collect DD for access, we always sat down with a cup of tea and chat.

Also, major decisions about our DD were made together and we tried to find common ground on other things such as bedtime was to be the same in each household etc.

For the most part it worked great and now DD is 20. We do not see each other as much now as DD makes her own arrangements with her DF but we do still chat every so often as friends. I think it also helps that his now DW is lovely and I get on well with her too and he gets on with my DP - me and DP even went to their wedding which some people were incredulous at but it made sense to us.

twirlypoo Wed 16-Sep-15 15:02:32

I should add, these arrangements only tend to work if neither party is abusive, no one has cheated and neither party is hoping for reconciliation. I think if any of the above factors are at play then keeping seperate and not muddying the waters would be best.

nrv0us Wed 16-Sep-15 15:26:34

Thanks for all these replies -- this is exactly the kind of stuff I need to know about.

MrsPear Wed 16-Sep-15 15:41:18

Hi my parents divorced when I was a teenager but my sister and brother were a lot younger - 3 and 9. Last Christmas I thanked them for making things so easy - we were never made to choose. We never got told no to going out with friends as it was dad visiting time, Christmas and birthdays plus any other special occasion were together. In fact even now some 20 yrs later my dad stays at mums for Christmas and other times so as to see my siblings - they are in different parts of the UK. At my graduation dinner my mum and dads then girlfriend got tipsy - dads face was a picture! For me they seemed a team as parents and as I was older I agreed they were right to divorce. They both agreed it was not easy with both holding their tongues at times but they did for us and for that I am truly grateful.

nrv0us Wed 16-Sep-15 21:59:50

Wow. That's great.

nrv0us Mon 28-Sep-15 11:51:43

Has anyone else experienced this?

RhubarbCrumbled Mon 28-Sep-15 16:50:13

I'm so glad this thread has come up! I'm in the last throws of trying to sort my marriage out but things are not looking good. I want to be able to keep the relationship with DH as good as possible so that my DSs miss out as little as possible. We are generelly very good friends but he's just not very good as a husband. This thread has given me hope we might just be able to come through this without all hell breaking lose and with some kind of friendship on the other side.

nrv0us Tue 29-Sep-15 13:29:20

Rhubarb -- Glad you're finding it useful.

Mrsmorrissey1 Tue 29-Sep-15 16:22:43

Hi. I am new to this but going through separation. I was very idealistic about having an amicable divorce, not making the mistakes we all know about, and being very cooperative with my ex. However, several things seem to derail that: 1) legal involvement, 2) in-laws and 3) other women. In my case, we were very amicable until he saw a solicitor, and his (very money-minded) family weighed in, at which point all our agreements unravelled and he will only discuss things through the solicitor. We now barely speak and make arrangments for the children by email/text. It is very sad and depressing, but I think you should be realistic and aware of these possible flash points. Good luck. It is a great aim, for the sake of your kids and sanity. And I'm told sometimes there is a rough patch while money etc. gets sorted out, then people manage friendship later on.

Richywalters12 Tue 13-Oct-15 23:07:27

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

threewords3 Thu 12-Nov-15 05:04:35

It's very early days here (he moved out in June) but so far we have managed to stay very amicable, and spend time together as a family for things like birthdays and when we have had family or friends visiting. But we are lucky as there isn't an awful lot to fight about re:finances and we were both on the same page regarding spending time with DS. The way the marriage ended I think we both were glad it was finished, and both enjoy spending time together as friends without the stresses that were part of the relationship, so it's made it easier to keep things friendly and spend time together with DS.

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