One very helpful concept that I heard in Divorce Care, shared by Dr. Jim Talley, was the concept of “The Line of Reconciliation.” He compared marriage to a highway. Each partner in marriage is on their side of the highway and even in a good marriage they move towards and away from one another at the center line. In a divorce situation one partner decides to stay far away from the line of reconciliation.
The hope Dr. Talley gives is that almost always even the partner who wanted a divorce will at some point in time come back to the line of reconciliation. They will at least be open to thinking if a reconciliation is possible or even desiring reconciliation. The key is that the partner who did not want a divorce needs to always be open to reconciliation and not be off dating or whatever because they might miss their golden opportunity to reconcile. I think the longest Dr. Talley had seen someone hold the line was a 12-year divorce before reconciliation.
I am thankful that during our 16-month separation I stayed at the line of reconciliation. Actually it was more like I chased after her in the ditch on her side of the road. She wasn’t very successful at getting rid of me. 🙂
See also Reconcilable Differences by Dr. Jim Talley.