11 Positive Signs During Your Separation That Show Reconciliation is Possible
If your marriage has been feeling one-sided for some time and you’re at your wit’s end, it can start to feel as if things between you and your spouse are hopeless. Perhaps you’ve determined that you need some space to reconsider what’s important to you. If this is the case, chances are you’ve sought a separation from your spouse.
But how can you tell if a reconciliation is possible between the two of you? Although nothing is certain, there are a few positive signs that could point to a reunion. Read on to learn more!
What Are The Chances? The Facts
Before going into the positive signs that could point to a future reconciliation, it’s important to ground them in realistic terms. Of the couples who separate, just 13% are reunited. According to another source, reconciliation may be even more difficult – with one study showing that 10% reconcile. Though these odds may seem grim, it means that there is a small glimmer of hope.
It appears that your odds are better if you’re a woman seeking to reconcile: a study showed that one-third of women attempting to reconcile their marriages succeed. Irrespective of gender, be on the lookout for the following signs. They may be an indication that reconciliation is possible.
1. Communication Improves or Stays Open
Nearly every relationship challenge boils down to communication, one way or the other. Many of the issues that can crop up could be attributed to one – or likely, both – spouses’ inability to properly communicate needs. Whether the issue at heart is intimacy, conflict, addictions, infidelity, or something else, it can all stem from the feeling of being unheard.
If you can keep lines of communication open – or, even better, communication starts to improve – you’ve got some positive signs there!
However, don’t feel that you need to communicate at all costs. Not all communication is good – the arguments leading to your separation may have already taught you that. Taking care in communication and owning up to mistakes is vital.
2. You See Positive Changes in Your Spouse
Did you know that three out of four unhappily married adults are married to a spouse who’s happy with the marriage? As shocking as it may sound, a separation can be a wake-up call for a spouse. If you’re seeing positive changes (such as an effort to understand your interests, increased patience, or eliminating harmful habits), it could be an indication that they want to reconcile.
3. You Forgive Each Other for Past Hurts
Few wounds hurt as deeply as the wounds of a spouse. It can be difficult to come to grips with, and they seem to compound until you finally start wondering whether you should separate. If through the course of your separation, you find that you and your spouse have learned to empathize and forgive each other, chances are that reconciliation is possible.
4. The Separation Seems Like It’ll Be Brief
If it feels like your relationship is improving, you’re treating each other with kindness, and things will come to a positive conclusion soon, you may be on track toward reuniting with your spouse. Though some sources say the average length of separation is 6 months for those who will ultimately reconcile, others say that the average length is one to two years.
5. Your Spouse Asks for Updates About You
Whether they’re asking you directly, contacting your family and friends, or interacting with you positively on social media, curiosity about your well-being can be a good sign. Note the type of interactions as well, though – if your spouse is going on social media and leaving nasty or hurtful comments, it’s best to block them and assume they’re not interested.
6. You Express Genuine Gratitude for Each Other
If your spouse sees your contributions and is genuinely grateful for who you are or your relationship with each other, there’s a chance you may be reconciled in the future. Gratitude is usually one of the first steps to something greater – and if your spouse can find gratitude for you after everything, perhaps they’ve had a change of heart.
7. Your Spouse is Showing Romantic Interest Again
Is your spouse flirting with you consistently? If you’re still attracted to them and they seem attracted to you (and no mind games or guile are involved), these are positive signs. In other words, they shouldn’t be flirting just to get a reaction, toy with your emotions, or trick you.
8. You’re Both Working On Yourselves
By this point, you are both likely through with empty promises. You need proof of change. If you’ve both done the following, this is a good sign:
- Identified the issues at the heart of the separation and worked on them
- Dealt with unmet expectations and accepted them
- Discovered the external stressors and eliminated/minimized them
- Taken responsibility for your actions
- Created and discussed boundaries
- Found healthy ways to cope with conflict/communicate
9. You Miss Each Other Again
Do you often wonder what your spouse is doing, or wish they would contact you? If you miss your spouse and they express that same sentiment, you might be ready to come together in the near future.
10. You Can Talk About the Good Memories
Are you able to say, “Our time together wasn’t all bad,” and laugh together over fond memories? Lighthearted banter could be a sign that the emotional wounds are healing. Your separated spouse could be testing the waters to see if you’re amicable to reconciling.
11. Neither of You is Dating Someone Else
If your spouse has begun dating someone else, chances are they’re sending the signal that it’s over. Even if they’re doing it to make you jealous, do you really want to continue the relationship with someone who will go to such lengths to hurt you? And if you are dating other people, is it fair to treat someone you once loved as a backup plan?
If you and your separated spouse remain single during the separation, it could mean that you’re keeping the door open for a reunion.
There May Be Hope For Your Marriage
If you’ve noticed some – or all – of these positive signs, there is a chance that reconciliation is possible. Have questions about your separation?
Additional reading to support your relationship as you explore options for couples therapy and healing:
What Causes Resentment In A Marriage (Plus How You Can Heal Resentment In Yours)
How To Discuss Relationship Problems Without Fighting
Why Do We Keep Having The Same Arguments?
7 Tips For Improving Communication In Marriage & How PACT Therapy Helps