Now that you have exhausted all of your options in attempting to work things out with your partner, it’s time to go your separate ways.
The first steps
You may start to realize that there are more things that have been purchased and acquired together than you ever could have imagined. People take all different routes out of a relationship; the best road to walk is one with respect and dignity. Be fair and think about the person you have shared your life with all this time.
Certainly, many of your belongings have meaning to both of you and contain memories you would both like to hold onto. When deciding to just get rid of things because nobody wants them, check with children if you have them. You would be surprised at the memories children carry based on the smallest of details in your home. Remember that everyone involved is going through an emotional life-changing event, so keep that in mind when making decisions and working through the process of separating your household.
When you need a lawyer and when you don’t
If you own property together, there is no doubt you will have to retain the services of a divorce attorney at some point in the process. What you wind up paying for attorney services at the end of the process is up to you and yours to control. Attorneys charge by the hour. If they have to draw up contracts based on what you have decided upon and prove them in court, it will cost a lot less than if he has to sit through screaming matches that become known as meetings for the two of you to decide who gets the toaster. It’s a toaster, what are you really holding onto?
If you find yourself caught up in hours of debating over small, invaluable and easy-to-replace items then you may want to reconsider if you are ready to split or not. Many people make the realization that they are not ready to throw in the towel just yet as they approach the final stages of the divorce process. Once you have made all of the decisions on dividing property that does not require negotiating, then call your attorney and let him do his job.
Be fair and accommodating
Chances are only one of you will be physically leaving the home you once shared. Somebody will be experiencing more of an emotional effect than others in the relationship. Even when it is agreed that it in the best interest of all parties, breaking up is hard to do. Losing the one person who has been a constant in your life will be a change in itself. Finding a new place to live and go through the actual transition will be even tougher.
Not everybody will be able to move right onto their own place. They may have a step transition and stay with a friend or family member until they find a place to call home. If this is your situation, think about using a self storage facility to store your belongings until move in day. While it is helpful if your partner is willing to hold on to them for you until you get situated, a clean break without any lingering attachment over personal belongings is really best for your emotional well being.