The cards will never tell you what to do but they can help you gain insights about the best way forward. Deciding to leave a long term partner or spouse is a massive step and some people deliberate for years before they make their move. Any guidance the Tarot can offer before making that final decision is gratefully accepted.
Very often, one person feels that they have outgrown the relationship because they have done a ton of work on themselves: taken responsibility for their lives, let go of the past, learned to communicate without blame, quit addictions and other destructive behaviour and started to make better choices in every way. However, their partner is not ready for change. This can be very frustrating, especially after years of trying to make it work but getting nowhere.
I like to use a spread I call ‘Should I Stay Or Should I Go?’ for this. It takes into consideration a third option. Yes, there is a third option. It’s called ‘Staying for now in awareness.’ It’s not fence-sitting out of indecision, it’s actively deciding to stay and to accept things the way they are.
Shuffle the deck well and locate the Justice card (this is a card that deals with marriage and divorce). Place the it and the cards you find on either side of it on the table. This tells you the balance (another theme for Justice) between the mind and the heart.
Shuffle and cut the remaining cards and randomly choose three more cards to place as shown in the picture below.
I’m using the gorgeous Lover’s Path Tarot by Kris Waldherr to illustrate this spread:
1. Your Heart. This is what your heart tells you and how you feel deep down about your relationship.
2. Your Mind. This is your deepest held belief about your relationship.
3. Staying. This tells you the reason you might decide to stay.
4. Going. This shows you why you might opt for singledom.
5. Advice. This card tells you what needs to change for you to decide to stay permanently.
1. HEART: Temperance. You truly love the other person and are searching with all your heart for a vision that will unite the two of you, ending the sense of separation you are experiencing.
2. MIND: Prince of Arrows (Swords). You are aware that communication between the two of you is a constant source of conflict but you believe that there is a way through and a possibility of finding a better way to communicate.
3. STAYING: Ace of Staves (Wands). You are still passionate about your partner.
4. GOING: Queen of Pentacles (Coins). Work and health matters currently weigh in favour of a separation.
5. ADVICE: Ace of Arrows (Swords). You need to change the way you think about your partner if you want to stay. How will you use your tongue (sword of communication) in the future? How willing are you to replace the thought ‘If only he would change?’ with ‘I love him just as he is and accept that right now he is not ready for change?’
I suppose that since most of our hurts come through relationships so will our healing, and I know that grace rarely makes sense for those looking in from the outside.
~ William P. Young