Cash-strapped couples can’t afford to split up

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More and more couples whose relationships have hit the rocks can’t afford to go their separate ways because they just haven’t got the cash, a new report has revealed.

And the ‘want to split, can’t afford it’ phenomenon, which experts have confirmed is an increasing issue in West Herts, can have a devastating effect on those involved.

Almost half of Relate’s counsellors across the country have reported that a growing proportion of the 150,000 clients they see each year have to stay under the same roof despite wanting to go their separate ways – and the problem is just as common in middle-income households as it is lower down the prosperity ladder.

The cost of setting up two households, and of childcare, mean that a physical break-up is simply unaffordable in the current economic climate.

And that just leads to further problems – and couples who do turn to Relate for help are increasingly unable to complete courses of counselling because money’s too tight.

But April Trawicki, the chief executive of the Relate branch which covers Dacorum, says it’s never too late to seek help and they never turn away anyone who genuinely wants assistance.

Relate offers expert counselling across the whole range of human relationships, providing sessions for couples, individuals and families whatever their problems. It’s not a free service, but thanks to support from backers including Dacorum Borough Council a sliding scale of charges reflects a client’s ability to pay.

April said: “If a relationship has broken down and both parties want to part, it’s not our job to try and put them back together again, but we can give guidance on how to make such a stressful situation less of a strain.

“But our key message is not to leave it until it’s too late. Every relationship comes under pressure at times, and money worries are one big factor.

“Sadly, people ignore the warning signs and if they sought help from our experts for a relationship check-up, it could really help them cope.”

Relate offers day and evening sessions at its offices in Hemel Hempstead’s Old Town. Call 01442 262618 or email to find out more.