Quick Escape

Preparing for Separation

Separation is a significant event for all family members, steps you can take to prepare yourself include considering the actions you will take, and how you will react, in a number of areas:

Safety First

  • If your partner makes you feel anxious or threatened, get help immediately. Separation can be destabilizing, and this situation is recognized as a crisis point for violence.
    Please see the Safety Resource section for those who can assist in the transition to living separately.
  • Seek counselling.
  • Do not lose your temper.
  • Do not be physically violent, engage in name-calling, bully or intimidate your partner.
  • Do not pressure your partner to do anything.


  • Do not put your children in the middle of your separation.
  • Do not speak badly about the other parent to your children, or where your children can overhear you.
  • Respond briefly in a timely matter on logistics involving the children. Do not address any other issues in these communications.


  • Be respectful in your communications.
  • Do not confront or send messages when you are angry, or have been drinking or are otherwise impaired.
  • Take time to provide considered responses on sensitive issues. Breathe, reflect, and do not send late night or knee-jerk responses.
  • Do not post anything about your partner or yourself on social media.
  • Protect your privacy. Use new personal email accounts with new passwords and security questions.

Financial Matters

  • Do not cancel health coverage or life insurance benefits.
  • Do not "clear out" joint accounts.
  • Do not overspend.
  • Organize your financial documents and make necessary copies.
  • Consider if you need to limit your lines of credit.