Can Formal Reconciliation Save Your Marriage?
Couples considering divorce will often try a trial separation before deciding to move forward with ending the marriage. But, formal reconciliation is a valid option to explore while separated that might save the marriage.
What is Formal Reconciliation?
Reconciliation is more than a husband and wife trying to figure things out on their own. It’s a process lead by a practicing attorney or a family therapist.
A professional helps with handling the disputes between the partners in a non-adversarial manner and without the intervention of the court system. The actual reconciliation is kept strictly confidential, and both partners can expect complete impartiality by the professionals.
How Formal Reconciliation Works
In most cases, the partners meet with the professional individually and then together. During these meetings, the reconciliation professional will evaluate specific issues and offer problem solving skills and communication strategies to help the couple identify, analyze and solve some of the problems that led to the separation.
In many cases, the couple isn’t communicating, or are dealing with physical or emotional infidelity. The therapist will help the couple communicate with each other in a way that they’re able to hear and understand each other’s point of view without anger or defensiveness.
The Goal of Reconciliation
Reconciliation is a healthy alternative to divorce mediation because the desire is to save the relationship. Whereas during divorce mediation, the goal is to finalize the divorce proceedings.
Even if both parties are sure that divorce is inevitable, the reconciliation process can be helpful because the couple has engaged in communication that has helped them understand the issues and where each other is coming from. Even if they still get divorced, the skills they learned during the reconciliation process will help them work together in the future, such as with co-parenting children without animosity or anger.
Couples have difficulty with communication and resolving conflict. Plus, there are issues with personalities, values, beliefs and expectations they have to figure out and work through.
It’s the job of the reconciliation professional to help couples talk about and process these issues.
The court system is adversarial. Once divorce proceedings are initiated, unless both parties agree to the divorce and are willing to make compromises without mediation, the process will be painful and expensive.
Divorce Affects Everything
Keep in mind, divorce affects not only the husband and wife but also the children, and their extended family and friends. The break up of a long term relationship can be painful and discouraging.
The process of using reconciliation and marriage specialists can reduce animosity, pave the way for forgiveness, regain trust, establish healthy boundaries, and save the marriage.
There’s nothing to lose and everything to gain by giving reconciliation a chance.