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Five Steps That Will Make Taking Care Of The Kids With An Ex-Spouse Easier

Divorce isn’t an easy decision. Unfortunately, it isn’t over just because your divorce is complete. If you have children with your ex-spouse, you’ll be dealing with the aftermath of your divorce for a lifetime.

Five Steps That Will Make Taking Care Of The Kids With An Ex-Spouse Easier

That doesn’t automatically mean you have to prepare for a contentious, angry, upsetting future of co-parenting with your ex-spouse. Just because you get divorced doesn’t mean your relationship ends. If you have children with your ex-spouse, it benefits you and your children to continue your relationship with your ex in the most positive light possible. 

There are many considerations when facing divorce for you to consider, lawyers are almost always involved, and it can upend your life for many months on end.

With these tips, you can continue taking care of the kids together, even if you are no longer romantically together.

Realize Your Relationship Has Changed—Not Ended

If you go through a divorce with your spouse, it’s unconsciously assumed that your relationship has ended. In cases where children aren’t involved, that is a real possibility. After assets have been divided and you have gone your separate ways, there’s no reason for you to speak to your ex-spouse ever again if you don’t want to.

That’s not the case when you have children together. That’s why it can be helpful to change the way you think about your relationship. Instead of running with the assumption that your relationship has ended, you should focus on the fact that it has changed.

With this small tweak in your thinking, you’ll find that you treat your communications with your ex-spouse differently. It may make you feel less frustrated when you see your ex is calling, and it will give you more motivation to communicate in more positive ways.

Give up the Winner/Loser Mentality

Going through a divorce can make you feel like there has to be a winner and a loser. Whether it’s the person who gets the house, the one who gets primary custody of the kids or getting alimony, it’s easy to treat it like a competition.

However, when kids are involved, you should be focused on making sure they win. In order for that to be the case, everyone needs to win! Stay in your ex-spouse’s corner. Help each other show up for the kids. When you work together, your kids will get a positive example of a healthy relationship, and you’ll enjoy your new relationship with your ex-spouse more.

Develop Peaceful Communication Strategies

There are a lot of hurt feelings surrounding a divorce. Set yourself up for success by starting the process with mediation services, and consider going to counseling together, even after your divorce is complete, to learn peaceful communication strategies.

A few tips for communicating better with your ex-spouse include:

  • Focus on describing your emotions
  • Avoid blame
  • Recap what they’ve said for clarification
  • Come up with compromises

You might also want to address methods of communication. For example, it may put you in a bad mood to receive phone calls late at night or random knocks on your door. Your communications may go much more smoothly if you agree to text or call by a certain time.

Keep It Together Around the Kids

There are probably plenty of bad things you can say about your ex-spouse, but you shouldn’t vent in front of your children. Remember, it’s not about winning and losing! If you say bad things about your ex-spouse, you may feel good in the moment, but your children’s relationship with their parent will suffer, and you’ll find that communicating with each other is more difficult.

If you do have to get some things off of your chest, don’t do it in front of the kids. Vent to a friend, consider going to therapy or wait until the kids aren’t around to speak to your ex-spouse about something that’s bothering you.

Focus on What You’ve Gained—Not What You Have Lost

Even if you know a divorce is what’s best for your family, it can still be hard to give up the dreams you had when you and your ex first got married. Instead of dwelling on what you’ve lost or how you wish things were, try and focus on what you’ve gained.

Divorce does come with some surprising advantages. When you follow the tips on this list, you’ll also enjoy the fact that you and your ex-spouse are still working together to make sure your children are healthy and happy.

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