This study explains changes in contact frequency in relationships of the preseparation personal network in the early and later years after partners separate. The explanation includes general and separation-related characteristics of the network relationship and the individual. Personal interviews were conducted in three waves of a 12-year longitudinal study with 40 men and 64 women who separated in 1987 or 1988. Multilevel analyses on 1639 network ties showed that multiplex and kin relationships remained over the long term. Contact changes depended on network relationship characteristics, structural conditions, perceived restrictions, and alternative network relationships. Separation-related characteristics were more important in the early years, general characteristics in the later years after the separation. © 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.