Red roses and relationship blues

THE day which has been long heralded as “the most romantic day of the year” is fast approaching.

Florists and restauranteurs are rubbing their hands with glee.

But don’t worry if you still don’t have a date.

According to recent reports you won’t be short of company.

A lot more people are about to become single. The Valentines transfer deadline window is well and truly open!

Facebook relationship status updates indicate that the weeks leading up to Valentine’s Day are a popular time for relationships to end.

The thought of spending a fortune on a meal, presents and flowers may raise questions about the true value of the relationship.

So, if your other half is acting suspiciously this week, whilst they may be planning a romantic getaway or candle-lit dinner they could also be preparing for a sharp exit.

You may be facing a chicken tikka masala for one and a night in watching “Take Me Out” on the TV.

Joking aside, if you have recently separated from your partner or are considering separating then here are some things you might want to consider.

Get advice from a lawyer early

Well-meaning family members and friends invariably have opinions to offer and stories to tell but are often wide of the mark.

A good family lawyer will be able to give clear advice on how to deal with your separation.

They will discuss all of the options available to you and identify the most appropriate way to deal with your separation.

They will also be also to advise on anything that needs immediate attention such as your day to day finances and contact with children.

Try to remain amicable

Don’t run to court. Mediation and Collaborative Practice are both excellent ways to resolve your separation in a civilised and sensible way.

If you have children, it is important to shield them as much as possible from your dispute

You shouldn’t disparage the other parent in front of them or if they are within earshot.

This can be hard if the other parent is behaving unreasonably. However, protecting your children from your dispute will minimise the impact on them.

Beware what you post on social media

Posting or commenting about your partner or your situation will likely only antagonise your partner and make the separation process harder.

You may also come to regret the posts you made at 2am after that bottle of wine when they are presented to you at court.

Debbie Reekie

Senior Solicitor - Family Law