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Is 'conscious uncoupling' a good concept for divorcing couples?

When a couple comes to the realization that their marriage is not working out, the process can often be emotionally painful. Those going through divorce will likely be left with questions and may wonder - what is the best approach to take when separating from my partner?

Minnesota residents may have heard about actress Gwyneth Paltrow's recent split with her husband. According to reports, the actress announced the separation on her website, Goop, and referred to the split at "conscious uncoupling." Paltrow is not the first person to explore the idea of conscious uncoupling, which originated in New Age psychology. The process is designed to ease the pain of a breakup and help each person focus on their lives as individuals.

Paltrow and her soon-to-be-ex have children, as many divorced couples do, and figuring out child custody and visitation schedules can be mentally and emotionally draining. Couples going through divorce must also discuss division of assets, residency and potential spousal support payments. Conscious uncoupling is designed to relieve some of the stress associated with divorce.

The idea of conscious uncoupling suggests that divorce should not be looked at as a personal failure. It also suggests that happy marriages in today's day-and-age may be harder to sustain, because humans live well into their 70s, compared to cavemen and women living only into their 30s. Many divorces do end bitterly, and this technique suggests changing the divorce concept, in focusing more on reinventing each person's life.

Although some couples may choose to go through the divorce process without any outside help, there is a complex legal process involved, and seeking advice from a divorce lawyer may help ease some stress during difficult times. Whether divorcing couples decide to try a technique like the conscious uncoupling method or not, it is important to remember that all divorces do not have to end on bad terms.

Source: The Daily News, "'Conscious uncoupling': Gwyneth Paltrow explores spiritual side of divorce on Goop," Tracy Miller, March 26, 2014

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