How well do you and your ex (or soon-to-be-ex) communicate with each other about your child custody and timesharing arrangements? Even if you usually get along, you are likely to experience occasions when a simple conversation devolves into a useless argument. Unfortunately, arguing instead of discussing important issues rarely results in a satisfactory resolution and often worsens the entire situation.
Whether you experience fights with your co-parent frequently or rarely, it serves your interests to handle the situation as well as possible. Doing so keeps you and your kids happy and helps ensure that your child-related arrangements function well.
Strategies to help you deal with arguments
How you react when a discussion point begins to spiral out of control can set the tone for the rest of the conversation. It can also help you manage future combative encounters calmly and rationally. Try out some of these suggestions:
- Let go of the need to be “right.”
- Consider yielding to your co-parent about something that will cause no hardship.
- Do not participate when discussions escalate into shouting matches.
- Step away from conversations that have nothing to do with your kids.
- Make sure you are not in the wrong before standing firm on a point of disagreement.
- Understand that fighting over something might not change either party’s opinion about a parenting issue.
- Weigh the advantages of arguing (there are few) against the effects it may have on your kids (like fear, insecurity and sadness).
If your parenting time and child custody arrangements are a frequent topic in your disagreements, maybe they are not working for your family. Seeking post-divorce modifications may be the solution you need.