Most of the time, spouses who are reluctant to separate in the first place hope that the separation will end as quickly as possible. Often they fear that the longer the separation goes on, the less chance they can save their marriage.
I heard a wife say, “My husband and I have been separated for almost nine months. At first, it was supposed to be a short trial separation. She said she just needed some time to clarify her feelings. She said she wanted some peace and quiet to himself. I didn’t think this would last long. I thought the worst case scenario was that he was gone for a month or maybe two. Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that it would be almost three-quarters of a year. and we would not be together again. Some friends of mine told me that the separation has lasted so long that it is time to face reality. They say that the time is too long and that means that my marriage is over. Are they right? ” I will say my opinion on this below.
Why is there no deadline to get back together: It is true that the longer you are apart, the more discouraging this can be. After all, things are getting more and more uncomfortable. As a result, you may begin to wonder if the long separation only indicates that there is no hope left. However, I have met many couples who reconciled many months or even years after their separation began. It is true that this is not the norm. But it happens. I know because it happened to me. And often when it happens it’s because someone has made a deliberate and courageous effort to hold on to their marriage. Here are some suggestions on how to do this.
Make sure you don’t become complacent and allow the distance to become literal and figurative: One of the main reasons that the passage of time is a threat during a separation is because the passage of time creates doubt and discomfort. One or both people begin to wonder why their spouse is not coming closer, and because they fear rejection, they may back off as well.
And before you know it, a good chunk of time has passed without any interaction. And then one day leads to another and finally you are seeing weeks or even months since you have spoken or seen your spouse. You want to avoid this if possible. Even if things are uncertain or uncomfortable, you still want to keep the lines of communication open. Sure, things can get so awkward that all you can do is have one cup of coffee together a week. Certainly this is better than nothing and if you can watch it so that your time together is enjoyable and that you both come to look forward to or long for this moment, then that is something you can build on.
But it’s better to have regular, awkward, or tense conversations and meetings than none at all. You don’t want to let too many things go by without any communication. If this is the case in your situation, then it may make sense to take the initiative to try to change this. Yes, you may feel vulnerable and like you are risking rejection. But keep things very simple and light. Your goal is not to save your marriage in a meeting or even in a series of meetings. Your real goal is to start improving your interactions, even if it’s just a little bit. You already know that this will be a gradual process. But if you can get your relationship back on the path of something regular, even if it’s casual, brief meetings or communications, then this is something worth doing.
There is no expiration date on your marriage: People often think that if too much time passes, their spouse will eventually forget about them or their marriage. However, they fear that their spouse will meet someone else. These things happen sometimes, but sometimes they are also only temporary. People come back together and reconcile all the time. There is no expiration date on your marriage or on any period of time in which you have reached the point of no return. Of course, the best thing for you is to try to keep things positive and try to make things better so that reconciliation happens sooner rather than later.