For the sake of their kids, divorced parents often find a way to put aside their personal feelings to give much needed love and support to their young ones. Co-parenting works in most cases, but there are times when it fails and it puts the children’s well-being more at risk as heated arguments between the exes occur more often.
Co-parenting doesn’t usually work when one parent refuses to cooperate and seeks to take matters into his or her own hands. Sadly, this is one of the most common single parent problems that divorcees face. To effectively cope, you must know how to deal with your high conflict ex.
Get the Support You Need
Having high conflict exes to deal with can be emotionally, mentally, and physically draining but it doesn’t mean that you need to rise up to the challenge alone. You can turn to family, friends, counselors and therapists for help because reacting negatively to your ex’s behavior is just going to fuel the fire more. Work with a professional from institutions like The Bridge Across to help you become a better parent and avoid more problems with your ex-spouse.
Limit Your Communication
To raise the child as parents, you will still need some form of communication with your ex but it has to be kept at a minimum. Keeping your distance is the best thing you can do to control sudden outbursts from both sides. Set some rules for communication between both of you. It is probably the best approach to avoid voice calls and meetups. Use text messages for concise conversations and e-mails if there is a need to discuss things in detail. Remember to always stay on point and stay away from topics that could lead to an argument.
Pick Your Battles
Dealing with a high conflict ex who sabotages your relationship with your children can put you in a foul mood enough to want to do the same. Don’t give into the temptation. You might receive some threats and demanding messages from your ex, which is expected and understandable. You must be prepared to reel in your emotions and think rationally. Before you even respond, think first whether the message really merits a reply from you. You don’t need to react to everything your ex says, especially if they are threats about your children’s custody.
What to Do When Co-Parenting Doesn’t Work, Huffington Post
The Conflict Connection: Figuring Out What Makes Your Difficult Ex Tick, www.DivorceAndChildren.com