Regrets? Absolutely.

I posted last year on the formation by Sir Paul Coleridge, one of the country’s leading family judges, of the Marriage Foundation. He makes headlines once again today, suggesting that 1 in 5 couples regret divorce within 5 years of Decree Absolute. Its worth pointing out that those polled appear to be former clients of the solicitors who conducted the research, and might therefore be those whose divorces were not amicably resolved, and therefore harder to recover from. Whilst I admire Sir Paul’s sentiment that people ought to think carefully before taking the drastic step of divorcing, my experience is that they think unbelievably hard about it, often for years and sometimes for decades. I recently divorced a lady of 86 after 63 years of marriage. The problems, she told me, began after the first year, by which time a son was on his way. She had stayed with him for the sake of the child. She is clearly not one of the one in five referred to….

Former High Court judge Sir Paul Coleridge, says couples who divorce are likely to regret it five years later.

A high proportion of those who separate wish they had stayed together after a few years of living with the consequences, family judge Sir Paul Coleridge said.

The warning to couples to think carefully before they separate follows evidence that more than one in five divorced or estranged people think later that they should've tried to save their marriage.

Sir Paul said: ‘Of course there are cases where divorce is inevitable. I haven’t sat in the courts for 40 years without knowing that there are cases where it is just as well the parties separated.

‘But it's been obvious to me that, by and large, a significant proportion of people who separate wish they had not five years down the line.’