A divorce is an emotional and physical life change. Where children are involved, it is critical to maintain a good relationship with your former spouse. Whether the divorce was congenial or not, and regardless of whether it involved a family attorney or other mediation, it is important to forge ahead with a new and different relationship with your former spouse.
Here Are Tips for Creating and Maintaining a Good Relationship With Your Former Spouse.
Take Responsibility for Your Contributions to the Marital Demise.
Rarely, if ever, is divorce solely the fault of one person. Admitting your faults will help heal the wounds each of you has from the divorce and will help you move forward as friends and co-parents. Taking responsibility for what went wrong in your marriage shows a sign of maturity. It allows you to properly heal from the trauma as well.
Create Boundaries and Stick to Them.
According to Psychology Today, it is not advisable to become involved with your ex’s friends or old neighbors. There are enough people in the world that you can find others to befriend or date.
These boundaries should exist in your new home also. When your ex visits, he or she should be treated like any other house guest. There should not exist familiarity and intimacy because you were once married.
Be Clear and Concise in Your Communication.
It is possible and preferable for some former spouses to limit their communication to written text and email messages. Written communication allows people to check and change their words if hurt feelings may occur from them. It also can keep interactions from being more personal. At this point, there should be no more emotional entanglement between the two of you. Make sure you are both healing and interacting after the divorce at a pace that works for you.
It should go without saying that you need to keep the children out of the middle of any communications. Your kids were created out of your once loving relationship and should never be used as pawns or intermediaries in the communication you have with each other.
Decide on the Roles of Your In-Laws After the Divorce.
This is a tricky area as kids hopefully have forged strong relationships with cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents. Both of you have to figure out the best way to maintain that continuity while respecting your new relationship as former spouses. The way you treat your ex’ family should be unbiased. Treat them as you would anyone else. It may be a difficult road to figure out how this looks for your new family unit, but it will help everyone get along better after the divorce.
After divorce, it is important to remember that you are still a team so respect each other and don’t undermine the other’s parenting or lifestyle choices. Keep a well-functioning relationship despite your differences and what you have been through together in the past. Don’t suffer more than you or your children need to. Remember to work on mutual respect and kindness.
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