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Friday, November 29, 2013

A new poll has highlighted  the additional stress suffered by divorced and separating couples at Christmas. The poll was commissioned as part of Family Dispute Resolution Week (Nov 25th – 30th 2013) by Resolution - the body representing 6,500 family law professionals in England and Wales. In response, Resolution are launching a new advice guide, providing more information about the options available for couples going through separation or divorce which can be downloaded at: www.resolution.org.uk/separatingtogether


The data from the poll, published today (25 Nov) – exactly one month before Christmas – reveals that half of all people (49%) in Wales say they find the Christmas season “very stressful”, rising to 55% for people who have been divorced.


The survey of Welsh adults, based on a ComRes poll for Resolution assesses a range of ‘Christmas stress factors’ and finds that making family arrangements, a fear of loneliness and deciding where to spend Christmas are causing “significant” concerns for many families in Wales “particularly divorced couples” according to experts.


Sophie Hughes, Head of Family Law at Watkins & Gunn Solicitors and Chair for Resolution in South Wales said: “Many aspects of the festive season cause acute stress for families in Wales but it is significant that particularly divorced or separated couples find the Christmas season stressful. We also know that the festive season can put a real stress on relationships. For those couples who are going through a separation, it can often be made significantly less stressful and more financially manageable by exploring all the options that are available.”


The research uncovered:

  • More than a third (36%) “just want the Christmas season to be over with as quickly as possible”, rising to 38% for divorced couples.
  • A quarter of respondents (24%) say they disagree with the statement that “I like the Christmas season because I can spend quality time with my family”, rising to 27% for divorced couples.
  • Loneliness is a problem for many people especially for people who have been divorced. 13% of respondents said that “I feel particularly lonely during the Christmas season” rising to 23% for people who have been divorced.


Sophie added: “The research also found that many people are unaware of their options when they are going through a break-up. Whilst for some couples court is unavoidable, for many more there are alternatives such as family mediation, family arbitration and the collaborative process. Resolution members are committed to helping couples going through break-ups to do so in the least stressful way possible, in order to help make future Christmases easier for both children and adults.”


Pontypool: 01495 762244 | Newport: 01633 262122 | Cardiff: 02921 154313

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