Breakups: what to do when it’s beyond repair

The end of any long-term relationship is hard, whether you’re the one who’s chosen to end things, or you’re accepting that, for whatever reason, your relationship is over.

What was everyday life has gone, and it’s normal to feel angry and shocked as you realise the full impact of the changes involved and begin to grieve for what you’ve lost.

Suddenly, everything you know is turned upside down, from your home life to your social and work life. As the reality of what’s happening starts to sink in, and your relationship comes to an end, it’s common to find it hard to focus at work and to struggle with disrupted sleep patEven the day-to-day routines of normal life can feel bewildering. And that’s all before the stress of planning a legal separation, working out the practicalities of how to divide the lives you’ve built together – or finding out how to get a divorce.

Confidential, qualified, capable help is here

Did you know that IET Connect offers a mediation grant to support separating couples? Whether you’re an IET member or your soon-to-be-ex-partner is an IET member, our mediation grant is there to help you to work out what your future will look like as you start to separate, or you seek a divorce petition form. All our help is provided in confidence and along with all the practical support you’ll get, we will lend a listening ear too.

How mediation works

Mediation can help you and your partner to find practical solutions that feel fair, for either a legal separation or a divorce.

It’s a route of negotiation that’s far less expensive than using lawyers and when compared to the adversarial court-based process can be less distressing. According to the Ministry of Justice Family Mediation guide:

“Family mediators are trained to work with people whose relationships have broken down. They come from professional backgrounds, such as law and healthcare. Mediators find solutions that both of you can agree on. A mediator will ask questions to understand your situation. Unlike going to court, you stay in control. No-one can make you do anything against your wishes. Discussions are confidential.”

Our mediation grant can help to cover the costs of mediation and ensure that finance is not a barrier to engaging in the mediation process for either party.

We understand that the end of a long-term relationship can be hard. These suggestions may help you to cope:

5 ways to reduce stress during a split 

  • Don’t shy away from asking for help, whether with your partner for relationship counselling or on your own with one-to-one counselling. Talking therapies can provide a safe, non-judgemental space to work out your feelings.
  • Keep an eye on the children – with the best will in the world, separation is upsetting for children. If you suspect they’re struggling, contact us for help, and we’ll help you to access a counsellor.
  • Try not to spend yourself happy – when finances are tight, and stress levels are high, spending on credit cards or into overdrafts can complicate the already difficult process of separating.
  • Take some time out – getting away for a while, be it for a night with friends or a walk by yourself, can help to release some of the pressure at home.
  • Try to create a bedtime routine to encourage a good night’s sleep. Sleep is an important part of maintaining your ability to focus and concentrate, and you need to look after yourself and your family as you navigate your separation. 

What’s the likely financial impact of a split?

Setting aside the emotional fall out of a relationship breakdown for a moment, there’s also a wealth of financial implications to consider. Splitting any household into two, especially when children are involved, is expensive and can demand the duplication of resources – while the available money is being halved.

As well as the cost implications of supporting a household on one wage, separation usually involves one member of the former couple moving out of the shared or family accommodation and having to rent, which may incur costs that include:

  • Continuing with mortgage payments for the family home
  • Finding and paying for temporary rented accommodation
  • Paying the upfront deposit of 6 weeks rent and then taking on the monthly rent
  • Furnishing and other essentials for the rented property
  • Utility payments on 2 homes

We’re not just here for the scary bits 

As well as providing a mediation grant, IET Connect offers a range of practical support to act as a safety net and help you and your partner through the stressful period that surrounds a separation or divorce.  

There are a number of benefits to becoming a member. As well as general welfare advice and information, we offer:

By adding this level of practical support to periods of uncertainty and emotional upheaval, IET Connect can help to take the edge off the stress that you and your family are experiencing.

Practical support and advice can help to ease financial worries, assist with housing enquiries, help with benefits advice for children or disabled family members, answer questions about childcare arrangements and costs and, importantly, free you from some of the worries you’ll have to focus on yourself or your children.

Finding your feet when you’re starting again

We understand that this is not an easy time, especially if your attempts at couples counselling haven’t worked – but we’re here to help you. 

We can help you remove some of the pressure, gain clarity about your situation and start to see a way to move forward with increased self-confidence, knowing you have our support.

Our mediation grant can help you and your partner to avoid the stress and expense of a lengthy legal battle and help you to find your feet as you begin your life as a newly-single person. The process may also help to develop your sense of resilience, free you to start rediscovering who you are as an individual and let you give yourself some time to rediscover what you love to do. 

Get in touch to find out what support is available to you – and your partner – during a separation or divorce.  


T: +44 (0)20 7344 5498
Monday to Friday
09.00-17.00 UK time

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