Gina Kirschenheiter admits she is “dragging her feet” when it comes to her divorce from husband Matt Kirschenheiter.
Gina’s divorce has been a topic of drama among the women on the RHOC, each questioning why the couple is divorcing.
But Gina is still insisting that nothing catastrophic happened to end her marriage. There was no cheating or something as equally horrible. In fact, she says, it’s not even the fact that her ex will move on and date, it’s that she’s “never been alone” and that scares her.
Gina filed for divorce from Matt on April 2, citing irreconcilable differences. They were married for seven years and have three children together: Nicholas, 5, Sienna, 4, and Luca, 2. The two will keep their shared main “humble home,” and rotate in and out on parenting duties.
Lauren Eavarone, who offers sex therapy and relationship counseling in NYC, says “there are many variables to consider when exploring the debate of whether it is best to end a relationship with a clean break or a gradual departure.”
“Issues concerning financial manners, children and property may make it difficult to just get up and get out,” Eavarone tells Bravo. “It may take time, communication and compromise to sort out these manners, which may be more challenging when cause of separation is due to something like breach of trust (infidelity, debt, etc.).
“In such circumstances a couple may still choose to make the clean break and utilize a third party, such as a lawyer, to sort out unresolved manners. This may be feasible for some but an expensive options for others. Rushing divorce decisions during a highly emotional time to ‘just get it over with’ is a temporary fix to a complicated manner. Instead, they could try setting their differences aside and collaborating on a more viable solution.”
And of course, it is harder when children are involved.
“A couple may benefit from learning to increase their tolerance of the other and communicate effectively,” Eavarone says. “This is especially true when children are involved and communication between partners may be necessary. Relationship counseling is not only useful for ongoing relationships, but for those who wish to go their separate ways in the smoothest way possible.”
“If the couple does have children, promoting an amicable transition and safe, supportive environment for the children of divorce/separation to express themselves is pertinent for their overall well-being. An effective way of doing this is leading by example, with the adults demonstrating a mutual respect and ability to communicate as necessary without the environment becoming toxic.”
“If a couple has little ties to each other (outside the partnership), allowing a clean break can benefit both parties,” Eavarone says.
“They benefit as they can refocus their attention to asserting their individual needs and reprioritizing their lives as each sees fit. A clean break promotes forward movement. It forces the individuals to experience various degrees of loss, learn and utilize coping tools and rediscover their likes and dislikes without the lingering ‘we’ and consideration of the other.”