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Facing the reality of co-parenting with your ex with dignity

Sometimes, the hardest part of divorce is dealing with your ex afterward. For couples with children, it is almost impossible to secure a total and clean break. Unless one spouse waives their parental rights or has such as problematic history that they don't receive visitation or custody, both spouses will likely be part of the parenting plan for the children.

It can be very difficult to reconcile yourself with the fact that you have to have an ongoing parenting relationship with your former spouse. However, it benefits you and your children to approach this unsavory fact of divorce with dignity and patience.

Protect yourself, but don't be unnecessarily contentious

You want to take steps to protect yourself, your children and your relationship with them. You shouldn't just agree to any terms that your ex requests. However, you also shouldn't battle unnecessarily over every minute detail. Create a negotiation strategy and stick to it. Try to remain calm during negotiations and conversations about the parenting plan.

Try to keep your priorities straight and your focus on setting yourself up for a better future with your children. Focusing on their happiness instead of holding your ex accountable for bad behavior can make it easier for you to move on without instigating more conflict in the divorce.

Know when to ask for help from others

If you and your ex still can't interact without fighting, you may have to seek help from a third-party. Whether it is a family member, a neighbor or a mutual friend, working with a third party to simplify custody exchanges and ensure unemotional communication can be in the best interest of everyone involved.

After a few months, you can likely move forward with direct exchanges. However, working with someone else during the worst parts of the process may make future relationship building easier. That's important, because you will have to work together for many years to come.

Try to remember that there are long-term consequences for your arguments

If you have a lot of strong emotions toward your ex, you might want to consider attending a divorce support group or ongoing therapy. Otherwise, that simmering anger and resentment could come out at the worst possible times, complicating your relationship. Even if you manage to avoid fighting with your ex, you could say something inappropriate in front of the children that could damage their perception of their loved one.

It isn't always easy to work with your ex after a divorce, but it is possible. You just have to have the determination to compromise and focus on what would be the best outcome for your kids. If you can maintain a focus on what your children need, you will find it is easier than you might expect to keep things civil with your ex.

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Mohajer Law Firm, APC

Mohajer Law Firm, APC
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