My "wusband" and I separated 20 months ago. It was very hard for our entire family. Suddenly, the second person in my life for 17+ years, sharing my room, sleeping in my bed and co-parenting with me was gone. I hadn't thought about what was next but true to what I've heard, the initial separation was met with euphoria. "Whew, we've made a decision. We aren't fighting all the time." This feeling didn't last and eventually, reality set in. Suddenly I was living in "The New Normal (though normal is not quite the word I'd use to describe it)". The life I knew and planned for were gone and the uncertainty of the future was overwhelming.
Divorce brings about more changes that you even anticipate. The obvious ones like the customary child custody schedule and support, but also your role as a person in society completely changes. Friendships change, your ex starts dating and suddenly you are re-entering the world as a single person. In my case I was in my 20s when I was single (I was also childless).
So while your entire life is being completely shaken up, you are also facing a tough decision AND you're having to look at your budget in a way that you haven't had to. Likely, your household budget has been stretched in half as you now have to pay for two electric bills, buy two gallons of milk, pay for two cable bills, etc.
Among these decisions you have to make - does one of us stay in the house and how do we divide what's already in it?
Most people will tell you, without learning too much about the situation, that it's almost always in the best interest to sell the home. The thoughts behind this are that maintaining a home by one person is more expensive and there are costs that need to be considered and most importantly because the house can be a painful reminder of experiences and memories we created as a couple. When I got my real estate license, one of the only selling tools I remember being given
Recently, when meeting with Attorney and Mediator, Shawn Weber, he referred to the home as the "Marital Museum". Our homes are the place we store our belongings, save our collectibles and raised our children. Letting go of the home and sentimental items is hard and sad. It's like the elephant in the room. You know it' s there but you really don't want to talk about it.
Going through divorce personally has given me both insight into what's involved in shedding these belongings and also a true understanding of what it means to "let go".
Making the decisions can be tough especially when there are children involved. You don't want to toss out everything...after all, these mementoes are a history of a union that created your family and children. At the same time, if something is causing pain, you don't want to have to look at it and be further reminded.