Date of this Version


Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Details

Power, M. R., (1996). Stages of separation. Australian Journal of family law. Vol. 10 (2) August 1996, pp, 143-162.

Reproduced with permission from the publisher LexisNexis.
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Copyright © Mary Power and LexisNexis, 1996.


While family lawyers dealing with personal traumas of separation have developed an intuitive understanding of human nature, the transformation of this understanding into effective client management can be significantly enhanced by better familiarity with the nature and process of separation through divorce. Furthermore, as much of the behaviour of separating couples can be understood in bereavement terms, a familiarity with these concepts can assist in understanding events occurring after separation. Similarly, the separation experienced in divorce bears a close relationship to other separations in people's lives so that seeing it in a "life stage" framework can help lawyers place client behaviour in perspective. In helping people through the process of separation, family lawyers may benefit from [*2] a consideration of the origin and dynamics of the conflicting and ambivalent emotions experienced by some of their clients. Understanding these change processes can help lawyers allow clients to take control of their lives as they choose among options for the future with the support of a competent professional who is safeguarding their interests.

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Family Law Commons



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