"I Wouldn't Wish It on My Worst Enemy": Western Australian Fathers' Perspectives on Their Marital Separation Experiences
Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science
School of Psychology and Social Science
Marital separation is a complex and emotionally painful life experience, especially in instances where children are involved. This exemplar study investigated the separation experiences of fathers. Its findings suggest that many separating fathers are at an emotional disadvantage during separation, not only grieving the loss of their former marital relationship, but also their simultaneous loss of contact with their child/ren, their fathering role, and their former family routine. It is posited that separated fathers' late start in the grieving process may put them at a psychoemotional disadvantage at the very time they are dealing with the complexities of formalizing their child contact arrangements. If future studies support this premise, then these findings will have equity implications for contact arrangement hearings.