Every couple is different, and every divorce is different, so only you can make a decision whether you should live with your spouse during divorce. According to a specialist family law attorney in Orange County, some people stay in the marital home to protect their rights to the property, and other people stay because they can’t afford to move out before the divorce is finalized. Couples may even decide to stay in the same house to better care for their children during their divorce.
Regardless of what you decide, certain behaviors can make living with the spouse during divorce more bearable.
- Think of your spouse as a roommate
When it comes to the household budget and chores, try to treat your spouse like a roommate. Split things down the middle and do not make any big purchases together. Be respectful of each other’s space and belongings and be courteous and polite to one another.
- Set boundaries and create space
Do not sleep with your soon-to-be-ex-spouse. This will only complicate things. Instead, designate certain areas of the home as your space, your spouse’s space, and common space. You can even learn your spouse’s routine, so if you do not feel like talking to them, you can keep away from being in the common space at the same time. A professional divorce attorney in Orange County suggests that this technique can even give you the privacy you need during the divorce.
Do not take privacy too far, however. If you are seeing someone else during the divorce, do not bring them into your marital home. To create even more space, you can always spend less time at home.
- Plan to move out
Know that living together will not be forever if you have a divorce on the horizon. Use your privacy to start planning your future and try to save money for your eventual move.
Keep away from arguments
Agreeing on a realistic budget, dividing household chores, and giving each other space are all tactics to keep away from arguments. If you do spend some time in the same room, try not to talk about the divorce case and stay calm and collected.
Try not to overreact or get angry and remember that you can always leave home to go for a walk, retreat into your space, or take a break and talk later.
- Be careful with your children
Be especially careful to keep away from arguments in front of your children. According to an experienced domestic violence lawyer in Orange County, not at all use your children as leverage. Always treat each other with kindness and respect in front of your children, and do not say anything bad regarding your spouse to or in front of your children. Each of you should also affirm your love for your children.
You and your spouse may choose to tell your children regarding your divorce, but this information may confuse them for the reason that you are still living together. Make sure you abide by your limits – and that your children understand them. If you sleep in the same bed, your kids might hope you are getting back together.
Living together during divorce can help both you and your spouse care for your children. Practice time-sharing by making a parenting schedule and do your best to split responsibilities equally. If you and your spouse still get along, you can still share special moments with your children but make sure you focus on your children.
Do your best to be clear and consistent and keep away from getting your children false hopes.
- Take care of yourself
Extend compassion to yourself and your spouse and acknowledge that this is a difficult situation. When you get overwhelmed, tell yourself that this will all be over soon and think about the future you would like after the divorce is finalized. Use the time you would normally spend with your spouse doing things you would like to do instead.
Often, friends and activities you have wanted to try can provide reprieve and get you out of the house. You can even read, write in your journal, watch movies, or catch up on TV.