Relationships require work, we all know that. Whether it’s your relationship with your boss, your spouse, or a friend, all relationships require a certain level of care and attention. So what do you do when you’ve tried to put in the work to make the relationship successful but it’s still not working out? Well, you have to separate yourself from the relationship, and sometimes that means divorce.

Catching the interest of the news world last week was the announcement that Bill and Melinda Gates would be seeking a divorce. As one of the wealthiest couples in the world, they have a staggeringly complex relationship when it comes to the businesses, foundations, and life they have built together. So, it was interesting to me that a couple with such an intertwined, complicated arrangement were so amicable about the separation. There were a few lines in the Gates’ joint statement on Twitter that really stood out to me:

We no longer believe we can grow together as a couple. After a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we have decided to end our marriage.”

– Bill & Melinda Gates, 2021

The statement is striking in its maturity. If other separating couples could take a step back and accept that they can’t grow together as a couple anymore, they may be able to save their family a great deal of stress. Of course, recognizing that a relationship isn’t working and taking the appropriate steps to change it isn’t easy, but remaining open and honest with one another is always a good idea. That way you can decide together what is best for your family, even if that means separating.

Every situation is different. This blog post is not intended to provide legal advice. Contact us for further help on your unique parental dispute.

Artwork by Megan Hewson. View her work at