In this KeyNote, family lawyers Zoe Bloom and Claudie Paddick take an alternative approach to articulating the frustrations often felt by many married couples in the aftermath of the holiday season.

Christmas … ‘tis the season to be jolly …Jolly crossJolly upsetJolly had enough … The twinkling lights, festive decs, gifts around the treeDon’t always lead to a contented family …Festive drinks, gifts and laughterSurely should lead to happy ever after? The kids’ Christmas panto attended aloneMy once-warm heart is turning to stoneA loving glance once held so dearNow across the room I see a sneer. The office party, you came home so lateTousled, almost ravaged, what can be our fate?I’m tired and lonely, crazy with doubtI’m thinking of how I can find my way out. A turkey from Lidl instead of WaitroseEau de toilette (not perfume) that gets up the noseA hastily bought ticket with so little thoughtIs it any wonder the atmosphere’s so fraught? The New Year arrives but only brings gloomAs you look at the stranger on the opposite side of the roomMy resolution is decided, the appointment shall be madeAs those close, loving memories wither and fade. I’m standing on the steps, about to ring the bellI’m feeling optimistic … I’m sure we’ll get on wellDivorce? It’s very frightening … I guess we’ll have to seeAt least I’m making a bit of a start … the first one … it’s for free!

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