My Wife Wants Separation

This is the recommended starting point for ALL men facing separation, even if other factors also apply.

After helping thousands of men going through separation, I’ve learned what works and what doesn’t.

Below you will find a step-by-step set of resources designed to rapidly teach you the most important lessons that will help you save your marriage and pull yourself through this crisis.

Table of Contents

#04 – Separation Strategy Part 4 – Rebuilt Trust One Step At A Time

Why is trust the #1 thing we focus on throughout the 3+1 Separation Strategy? Why is trust so important in rebuilding the foundation of a future happy marriage with your wife?

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#03 – Separation Strategy Part 3: Show That Man To Your Wife In A Way That Makes Her Life Better

With self-control and self-improvement in place, we begin looking at how you can start showing your wife the man she could have if she stays. The third and final step of the 3+1 Separation Strategy is where we harness the work of the first two steps in a way that [...]

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#02 – Separation Strategy Part 2: Become The Man You Want To Be

The second step of the 3+1 Separation Strategy is all about self-improvement. With self-control firmly in place, we can harness that discipline to start making meaningful changes in you as a man, husband and father. In this episode, I'll walk you through a few different ways you can pinpoint the [...]

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#01 – 3+1 Separation Strategy Part 1: Stop The Desperation, Find Your Focus

We're kicking off the Husband Help Haven Podcast with an in-depth walk through of the 3+1 Separation Strategy. In this first episode, we'll overview the strategy as a whole, where it came from and why I recommend it as a starting point for most men facing separation. Once we've over-viewed [...]

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Common Challenges During Separation


Below you will find answers to the most common questions that men have when facing separation.

Wife Took Off Her Wedding Ring

My Wife Took Off Her Wedding Ring – Should I Keep Mine On?

My wife and I are separated and she has taken off her wedding ring. I still wear mine because I am committed to fighting for our marriage. Should I take my ring off to try and relieve pressure on her? Or is it better to keep it on to show her I want the marriage…

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How to get your wife back with no contact

4 Separation Strategies When Your Wife Won’t See You

You’ve made positive changes as a man, and you’re a better husband than the day your wife left. The problem is, your wife can’t see any of it because she won’t see you or communicate with you. And if you do see her, she gives you the cold shoulder. How do you show your wife…

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Should you move out to give your wife space

Should You Move Out to Give Your Wife Space?

Let’s step away from the divorce strategy talk for a moment. Let’s assume you’ve done your due diligence, you’ve talked to a lawyer, and you’ve done the move out checklist… At the very least, you are prepared for the worst-case scenario. You know the risk. Now let’s talk about the rewards… What are the potential…

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how to convince your wife not to leave v2

How Do I Convince My Wife Not to Leave? Here’s A Different Approach…

Are you looking for the exact thing to say to get your wife to stay in the marriage? How do you get her to believe what you already know — that the marriage can make her happier than divorce, if she would just put in the work with you? Before I tell you the answer,…

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Wait... What Does "Separated" Even Mean?

The Basics

If separation is a complete shock to you, there’s a good chance are mere hours or days out from your wife telling you she wants out

Standard Definition

Let’s be honest, separation can mean different things to different people. Since separation can either be legal or informal, its definition will depend on your circumstances.

Big picture, I think of separation as…

Separated: when your wife wants out of the marriage, but you are not yet divorced.

This can put you anywhere on a pretty wide spectrum.

Your wife might want space to think about things, and has told you that she isn’t sure about her future commitment to the marriage. You still live together and get along, and things might feel normal most of the time.

That^ is separation. Or…

Your wife might have already moved out, met with an attorney, drawn up a separation agreement complete with finances and custody, and cut off all non-business contact with you.

That^ is also separation.

Obviously, one of those situations presents a lot more opportunity for reconnection than the other. But, that doesn’t mean there’s no hope if your situation is closer to the latter.

Factors That Affect Separation

In some ways, every separation is different, because every marriage is different. You and your wife have a unique story, you’ve faced unique challenges, you are each unique one-of-a-kind people.

However, after a decade and change of coaching men through separation, I’ve identified some different “metrics” by which to gauge any separation’s intensity.

  • Living arrangement – Still live together, live totally separately, or “nesting” where you alternate time in the marital home.
  • Stage of separation – my own personal way of measuring how far the separation has progressed, see The Separation Roadmap.
  • Firmness of Intent – is your wife dead-set on the divorce, or does she seem to have moments of doubt or even outright questioning?
  • Pace of Action – Is your wife taking real-world steps to make divorce a reality, such as meeting with an attorney or looking at places to live?
  • Fidelity to the marriage – Is there any sort of other relationship going on?
  • Level of personal crisis – Both for her and for you.

These are the sort of things I’m looking for when first meeting with a client, so by sharing them I hope to give you some context for your own position.

Relevant Statistics

  • A huge majority (upwards of 2/3) of divorces are filed by the wife, rather than the husband. You are not alone.

  • According to East Carolina University, approximately 1 in 4 spouses report thinking about separation.

  • Average length of separation varies from study to study. From my personal experience, most men should plan to measure their separation in months.

  • Rates of reconciliation also vary, both between studies and between circumstances. We know sharing children does increase the likelihood of reconciliation. We also know that shorter is usually better, but that once you get past the 4-6 week mark, your odds don't significantly diminish again until beyond the 2 year mark.

Can She Still Come Back?

Yes, yes, yes!

Although the Let Her Go Mindset means that we can never guarantee that your wife will come back, here’s what I can tell you.

I have seen marriages saved…

  • Even after full-blown, years-long affairs.
  • On the literal day that the divorce papers were set to be finalized.
  • After the wife insisted for months and months on end that there was NO hope, NO chance, she was NEVER coming back.
  • Even after the wife insisted she only got married to have kids, she never truly felt love, and was determined to find her true self.

Do you know what every single one of these success stories has in common?

They were really, really hard to get through. None of them happened easily or on accident.

But, the good news is, there ARE things you can control in this situation. And most of those things start in the mirror.

All Separation-Related Articles


Still haven’t found what you’re looking for?  Below you will find every single article on Husband Help Haven that has anything to do with separation.