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Advice: How to go through with it...

Community Member

hi Folks,

I have been married for almost 8 years and we have two young children ( 4 and 6). For years we have had significant issues with our relationship but just can't get along with each other. There is no physical abuse nor have we been unfaithful to each other. We are not compatible and I am worried about the impact on our children that an unhappy relationship will have on their future. We fight a lot in front of them (even though we try not to) and are not loving and kind towards each other. We have been in marriage counseling twice over the past 5 years and the message seems to go in one ear and out the other.

Anyways I know we need to move as it will be the best thing for us and our children.

We have had the conversation in the past to separate but we never end up going through with it. A few hours later we agree to try and reconcile AGAIN as we are too scared / fearful to actually go through with separation. My wife is very volatile and looses her temper quite easily. When the conversation starts to get out of hand and heats up I shut off and try to diffuse the situation versus trying to navigate our way forward.

Looking for some advice based upon previous experience on how to move forward.


3 Replies 3

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi, welcome

We've had similar posts lately whereby the poster is worried about the effect on their children to separate.

Yes, my kids were 7 and 5yo in 1996 when that day came, in fact I'd held off separating for the childrens sake. But that led to a suicide attempt and that was what made me realise it was the wrong decision.

I left then every day rang the school principle to confirm my kids had made it to school as my then wife was very lazy. They did make it and one day I broke down over the phone- the principle said "children are far more resilient than adults, they will be fine" and they were.

So, make the break and leave on the best terms possible with your wife, I was unable to have a friendly split with my ex due to her attitude so it only takes one party to be vindictive and you wont have good communication.

I hope it all goes smoothly and the following threads might help


beyondblue topic the best praise you'll ever get

beyondblue topic worry worry worry

beyondblue topic guilt the tormentor


Community Member

Hi Gordon

I'm sorry to read about your situation. You sound very clear headed and responsible. I agree that it is far better to end the marriage than have the children witness the arguments and experience the family tension.

At their age you have a golden opportunity to nip any damage in the bud.

I'm backing white knight's advice here all the way. Find the strength to end the marriage (its neither pleasant nor easy) and regain control of your life. Many of us have experienced the pain of broken marriages but there is life on the other side.

Please visit this forum again if you need support during the action phase of ending your marriage. Good luck.

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi GordonOZ

It's a difficult decision but if your mind is made up then one possible next step is to move out. A very important step is to get legal advice. There are free legal lines you can call for advice.

As TonyWK said it only takes 1 person to be nasty … but if you can both work things out together in the separation mode then that would be wonderful. I hope you can avoid Family Law Court.

Another step is to put your name on the list for Mediation through an agency like Relationships Australia (cheapish option). There are often long waits and apparently covid19 is clogging things up more.

Have you thought about the care arrangements for the children?
If you attend and succeed through Mediation then you will end up having a Parenting Plan. You don't have to sign this immediately and I would recommend showing the document to a lawyer before signing. This is not a legally binding document so if you have ANY concerns, you will need to get Consent Orders or Court Orders. A Parenting Plan can be lodged in Family Law Court and converted to Consent Orders which protects the children's rights to see both parents agreed times. Orders are legally binding. You can phone Federal Circuit Court helplines and they are AMAZING advising you on legal processes only - no legal advice.

Have you given any thought to the division of property?

None of it is fun!

You must be separated for 1y before lodging for a divorce. I lodged my separation date with Centrelink and I'm glad I did (this also became contentious - eye roll). They will ask for a "Care %" of the time the children spend with each parent, so it helps if you have worked this out beforehand. I believe they check thoroughly on this. TELL some trusted friends preferably with letters after their names (eye roll again) your exact separation date and ask them to put it in their phone Diary or such. Centrelink wanted a lot of my friends to verify. They settled with the first, a professor (triple eye roll).

Also the divorce court will ask about the care arrangements for the children and the division of property. There are legal "timely" points outlined online for this to be completed by.

After all that you might want to stay married.
Sorry, I tried for brevity!

Best wishes to you all