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Redefining your relationship with your ex

Managing your relationship with your ex (especially if you’re parent) can be stressful, annoying and can create problems in your life. Your current partner can also point fingers at relationship with your ex. Therefore, it is wise to handle it with great care. Managing relationship with your ex is also important because you want to keep visiting your children and at the same time want good relations with your current partner. Following are the tips that can be helpful to manage your relationship with your ex.

  • Adopt a business like attitude:

Although, your journey with your previous partner is over, however, you still have to look after your children. As, children would be staying at one of your place, you or your ex-partner will be visiting them as per the mutually agreed schedule. There are chances that you would be seeing your ex there. It is always good to handle your ex with a business like attitude. Just mind your business and spend good time with your children. Try to ignore if he/she tries to make a point at you. Avoid discussing your past, your current life or about your current partner. You may find it difficult to handle, as sometimes you may feel emotionally unstable. Take it as a professional task and consider you are being put in an assessment centre, to prove your emotional strength.

  • Don’t track your ex activities:

After divorce or separation, you may feel hurt, angry or egoistic. You may try to confront, criticize or condemn your partner. Sometimes, you feel so sick that you start tracking your ex activities. Why your partner left you? Is he/she started dating? Was there someone he/she used to date when you both were in relationship? How he/she is feeling after breakup? You may have so many questions in your mind and you try to find an answer why your ex left you. You need to tell yourself that your relationship is over and it’s useless to keep an eye on your ex activities. You’ve a lot of better thing to do than this. Don’t waste your energy in trying to keep a check on your ex. Instead of putting your mind into negativity, try to spend good time with your children.

  • Don’t use your children as a messenger:

Ask your children to cooperate with the new partner in the house. Don’t ask your kids to deliver messages to your ex on your behalf. Keep them out of it and don’t try to make the kids stand at your side. Also, never discuss your story with kids by telling them who is responsible for this and why they are facing this. As children are already suffering from negative thoughts and feelings, it is now your duty to make them feel positive and at home. Be encouraging, supportive and helpful.

  • Don’t talk to your ex in a disrespectful or taunting manner:

Although, you have issues with your ex and you may not respect him/her for certain reasons. You need to tell yourself that you are respecting your ex partner because he/she is a parent of your children. Avoid hitting personal points or judging him/her and don’t try to win an argument. You should consider that now your relationship with your ex has changed and you should not interact with him/her unnecessary.

Also read: Difference between divorce and judicial separation

  • Don’t overreact:

You may be short tempered and angry with your ex. However, you need to practice patience, if you don’t agree with his/her point. Don’t flare up if you don’t agree with the opinion or the suggestion of your ex. Try to control your anger and try to address the issue by telling him/her about your concerns. Ask your ex that you will update him/her about this in a while and ask for some time to think. It may be possible that you have made your decision right away, which doesn’t match with the decision of your ex. Asking for some time and then letting your ex know about your decision will have more impact.

  • Give the other parent notice regarding issues:

If you want to discuss certain issues with your ex, let him/her know beforehand. Give him/her a call or drop email and inform that you want to talk about this. When he/she would be available? What would be the appropriate time for this? Where both of you should discuss this? Consider meeting in public to discuss your issues and concerns and avoid heated discussions.

  • Don’t fight over issues while exchanging children:

You may find it more convenient to talk about the issues and concerns, while exchanging children. However, this is not the best time to talk about it as you may feel intense emotionally. Avoid having such discussion when you’re picking or dropping children, as these are very emotional moments and you may lose temper. Always try to plan the meeting by agreeing on the mutually agreed time and always make sure your availability at the agreed time.

  • Do not have heated arguments or discussions in front of your children:

Children are the one that suffer a lot during the separation or divorce. So, it is better not to fight over your issues in front of children. Try your best not to tell your children know about what things you’re discussing unless it’s regarding a school change or related to them. In some cases, if the talk is regarding the children expense or pick and drop, try to discuss it, in the absence of your children. Exposing your children to such conversions make them feel burdened and they may develop negative feelings regarding either or both of the parent.

Read another view point: Stay Friends After Divorce: Why, Coping, & Moving On

  • Do write everything:

Both of you will feel a little awkward and may have trust issues writing the arrangements and agreements, but it is usually a good practice. Writing down will entitled you both to stick to its terms and conditions and will obliterate a lot of misunderstanding. In case, either party disagrees with a certain point, written agreement can be used to address the issue. This will help you simplify things and a lot of disputes can be avoided.

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