Cartoon style bomb on wooden table on black background{3:36 minutes to read} 

“Don said our plan was unworkable, because we had a history of domestic violence, but we insisted that he should follow our decision to remain living together.  We should have listened to his advice, but we didn’t. Here it is 2 months later, my spouse is in jail.  Don said, people who have a tendency towards violence and are getting divorced are really like a ticking time bomb. They should not be living  together with their soon to be ex-spouse.”

Couples often have an idea of what their living situation is going to be after separation or divorce and when one of them is going to move out of the marital residence. Most of the time, it is a reasonable arrangement, but some of the time it’s not.

When part of their proposed agreement says “we’re getting divorced, but we’re going to continue living together for a lengthy period of time like 1 or 5 years,” I tell them that that type of arrangement usually doesn’t work. My experience tells me that living together post-divorce/ separation is in almost all cases, a really bad idea. Divorce/separation is about living apart, not remaining together.  If you want to continue living together, then maybe consider marriage counseling, because that decision to live together tells me you are not ready to give up on the marriage.

What do you do if one spouse doesn’t want to move out of the house? They’d rather stay together miserable and in a heated confrontation all the time. They don’t talk. They are in separate rooms, upstairs, downstairs, etc. I tell them this is no way for them to live and that one of them will have to move out.  They ignore my advice, and in a month or so, I receive a call saying, “What were we thinking? There was an incident of domestic violence.  I called the police and they just took my spouse away.

I admit I don’t have all the answers. I advise my clients what works, based on my experience. I guess it’s not their fault but they haven’t been through a divorce before.  They can’t foresee what is likely to happen next when their anger takes over and they are not making well thought out decisions.

When your relationship is extremely acrimonious and you think that continuing to live together is a good decision, it is more likely a recipe for disaster.

Does this scenario describe how you are living every day?

If you are in this situation, talk to an attorney, a social worker, or someone who has experience in domestic violence cases.  Often an outside opinion while going through mediation can be a great help.

And by all means, listen when Don tells you the plan is unworkable, and avoid being the victim.

About Don Sinkov

Don Sinkov Your Divorce Mediator Westchester County, NY Putnam County, NY Phone: (914) 588-6258 eMail: