How can you move on if you can't move out?By Patia Braithwaite for BounceBack.com
We've all heard that the leading cause of relationship strife is finances, but what happens if the thing that tears you apart is exactly what forces you to stay together? According to a recent NPR news story , there is a direct link between economic turmoil and divorce rates, with many couples opting not to divorce because they cannot afford it. Even couples that aren't married might find that breaking up doesn't mean that they can break their lease.
So what do you do when you want to separate, but you can't move out and move on? Here are a few tips for coping with this situation:
1. Respect Each Others' Space: Even though you can't exactly draw a line down the middle of the apartment, you can respect each others' personal space. Consider who will sleep where, and perhaps arrange your schedules so that the two of you don't end up spending lots of time in the apartment together.
2. Don't Date Yet: It's not a good idea to rush into the dating scene after a breakup; however, it is very bad to run out and date when you still live with your ex. Breaking up isn't easy for anyone, so resist the urge to run out and prove you've moved on. Take the time to break ties geographically before moving on physically or emotionally. And, if you do decide to date, don't bring the new beau home.
3. Consider Temporary Options: Give some serious thought to crashing with friends or family while the two of you figure out the next move. If the relationship is extremely volatile, it might be healthier to just pack a duffel bag and get some space.
4. Communicate: If the two of you can remain open and honest throughout this time of transition, that's great, but even if you can't, be sure to process your feelings -- either with friends or perhaps the help of a counselor. Breakups are extremely difficult, and having to distance yourself emotionally without being able to remove yourself physically can be very trying. Be sure to seek support through this time; it isn't easy.
Patia Braithwaite is a relationship and memoir writer. Check out her blog at http://menmyselfandgod.wordpress.com
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