My husband and i have been living apart for almost 5 years now, and for where I live, while I wouldn’t call it commonplace, it’s not exactly a strange thing to do.
What I find relatively strange is that it appears more and more young people are doing the loving apart now than was done in the past. Usually, due to work, school or just pure financial purposes.
In the zeal to get married, most don’t really think out the implications of loving apart, so I was quite impressed, when this guy asked me for advice on how to go about it. He basically asked “Should I do it?” And I had no answer for him. Because my heart was screaming “NO, don’t do it! One of you should make the sacrifice for the marriage now and you’ll be glad you did later.”
But, I didn’t quite say that because like me everyone has their issues and their reasons and in this world sometimes you just can’t get everything the way you want it, SO what I ended up telling him was:
- Don’t do it… but if you have to then:
- Do not pile up any guilt on yourself –IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT – there will be times when you’ll be sitting alone in your house, when you’ll ask yourself “What the heck am I doing here?” Prepare your mind that those times will come and when they do remind yourself of why you’re doing it and that it wasn’t entirely your decision;
- Ensure that it wasn’t entirely your decision; carefully consider all options available to you with your partner, so you can truthfully say that you covered every logical option available to you both at the time;
- Talk… A LOT. Ensure that the other party is in your life and knows what is going on at your end, so whenever they’re around they don’t feel like fish out of water. This is especially important if there are kids involved. Let the man (or woman) know what happened in school, and the funny this one did and why you had to spank that one and even who’s getting you mad at the office – stuff you should ordinarily tell if they were physically present;
- Trust each other… You can’t live your life wondering what the other person is doing and why he’s not answering his phone or who she’s with when she’s working late. You just have to believe that the other person is as committed to the relationship or marriage as you are, and if they are not, well you may need consider No. 1;
- Trust each other AGAIN! You have to believe that the other is doing everything they can for the best interest of you both or you all i(f it’s more than just you two). Let him earn his living the best way he knows how, if that involves late nights… so be it. Allow her raise the kids when you’re not there, it’s no use if all they have to do is call daddy and whatever punishment mummy gave is overturned. I guess this one should be Respect each other;
- Make time for one another: This involves a lot of scheduling depending on the kind of jobs each one has and birthdays, school holidays, public holidays, leave days etc. And there always should be some special time alone for just the two of you, ESPECIALLY when there are children involved; (here’s where the grandmas come in)
- When it’s time to move, you’ll know it. And when it’s time to move – MOVE!
- Pray, Pray Pray – for wisdom, for guidance, for comfort, against loneliness, against temptation and for strength ) and whatever else you can think of. Just Pray!
For all you that are loving apart, or about to, or contemplating it for sometime in the future, know this one thing – that it will not last forever. Everything works together for the good of them that love the Lord, so if you believe, you will see the good that will come out of the whole situation. And if you don’t believe it can, please seriously go back to No. 1!
Photo Credit – Andersen Ross