“We’ve all felt trapped at a social event. If you really want to leave, pull the host aside, say you had a wonderful time but you need to go,” says Brecht. “Just say you’re exhausted and need to get home to sleep. Saying you’re not well can backfi re if you’re seen out and about the next day.”
Know you have to leave an important work meeting? “Don’t do it at the last minute. Tell the group at the start, so it won’t be a shock,” says Fuller. “If you really want to make a good impression, leave print-outs of your proposal and ideas, or an update. And leave two business cards for each person so they can pass one on to their colleagues. All the better branding for you.”
Saying goodbye to a partner is one thing, but when there are children involved you can make it less excruciating by heeding this advice from the Family Relationship Centres of Australia.
- Communicate by phone, letter or email with your partner if you are constantly arguing in person.
- Try to be pleasant when you have to see the other parent for the “handover” – especially in front of your child. And, for your own sake, remember that staying angry with your ex allows them to live rent-free in your head.
- Rethink your role as parent, not partner. You’re no longer partners, but parents forever.
- Get free advice from a relationship centre about a parenting plan for your children, including fair hours of care, school and weekend activities – and who is responsible for after-school pick-ups, etc.
- Remove everything from the home that was connected to the other parent, which can cause children to feel isolated.
- Frequently moan to your children about problems or maintenance issues – they may start to feel insecure.
- Tap in to telephone conversations between your child and the other parent – it teaches your child to not trust others.
- Buy extravagant gifts to compensate for separation – it will give your child a distorted view of what relationships are about.
- Compete with your partner; instead, let the other talk without interruption.
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