How To Get Along With An Ex After Divorce

Divorces are tricky to navigate especially if you have kids, but it doesn’t have to be. Here’s a quick guide to help get along with an ex after divorce.

by Troop Atomic Mommy

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Divorce is never easy, and there will always be conflicts and difficult emotions to work through. If there are children involved in the divorce, you will have to find a way of getting along with your ex-partner and maintaining a healthy relationship with your kids. In this article, you will find some tips for navigating this difficult life situation and finding your place in a new life situation. 

Key Takeaways After Divorce

  • Treat your new life situation as a fresh start and avoid talking about past difficulties 
  • Contact a divorce lawyer as soon as possible to help you navigate the separation
  • Once you are divorced, you can let go of compromises and stand your ground 
  • Forgiveness and understanding are excellent ways to create some new life harmony
  • Jealousy is likely to be a feature of your future life, so try to work positively with it 

Avoid the Past 

There are plenty of reasons why the two of you separated and then divorced, some of them will be valid, and others will be unfair – at least in your mind – but it’s important to let go of the past and treat your post-divorce relationship as a separate entity, even if you have some old triggers. 

If you still have a working relationship with your ex-husband or wife and there is a child involved, you’ll need to be mature about your behavior towards your ex-partner in order to educate your child about responsibility and civility in the face of the hardships of relationships.  By doing so, you will also be creating a safe and stable home for your child.

Pick Your Battles 

Although you have both moved on with your lives – you might have new partners, new homes, and new children – there may still be some triggering, psychological baggage that may remain between the two of you. Having spent so many years together, you and your partner know where the conflicts are hardest. 

Triggers and conflicts are destined to happen as you navigate your post-divorce life. You may come into conflict with your ex due to legal issues, custody issues, or interpersonal issues. If you ex is the instigator, don’t take the bait. Choose your battles and consider using a professional divorce lawyer to help guide you following the divorce.  

Stand Your Ground 

When you were in a relationship with your ex, you made a lot of compromises; that’s because compromise is one of the foundations of collaboration in a marriage, and it means listening to another person and adopting their views and attitudes on certain issues, but not after a divorce. 

A lot of people display the same patterns after a divorce that they displayed during the marriage; that’s because of the dynamic between the two of you. Now, it’s time to stand your ground and avoid compromising on the issues you think are important.

Practice Forgiveness 

Marriages can be turbulent, and resentment and bitterness develop over the years. Inside a marriage, it may feel as if there is little room to maneuver. So, you end up working within the limitations of the arrangement to find appropriate outcomes. But when the marriage is over, you will have a newfound freedom.    

With this freedom comes a new capacity for forgiveness. There is no point in continuing to feel bitterness and resentment; instead, try to understand that your ex-partner has similar issues but deals with things in their own way. Try to forgive yourself and your partner for all the difficulties. 

Practice Understanding 

Understanding is the gateway to compassion and friendship, but even if you and your ex are not exactly friends, you should try to understand the situation from their point of view. It’s easy to be defensive and blame-oriented in the event of a breakup, but there are issues on both sides. 

Spend some time trying to understand yourself and your partner to help you move through the issues and find harmony. Understanding makes life easier, but it also creates a more amicable situation for children.

Avoid Defensiveness 

When the finger of blame is pointing at you, the impulsive reaction is to become defensive and attack the other person in return, even if they have a valid point. If there is a custody situation to navigate, chances are you and your partner have different ideas of how to parent.

When you become defensive, it’s an indication that you have a weak point somewhere around the issue; perhaps you have not thought it through, or you were caught off guard, or perhaps you are emotionally ready to handle criticism. The best defense is to be calm under pressure.   

Healthy Distance 

While you still have to communicate and see each other following a divorce, it’s best to maintain a healthy distance physically and emotionally. When you remain close, you delay the healing process and increase the potential for conflict and confusion, especially if children are involved. 

Following a divorce, you might want to move to a new town or village. While this might make traveling a little less convenient, it will help you to move on and establish your life again in a new place. It’s also important to move on emotionally, so make sure you have a therapist to talk to. 

Avoid Jealousy 

People move at different times, and you might have to watch as your ex-partner finds someone new to be with. No matter when this event occurs, it is likely to bring up feelings of jealousy and envy.

While jealousy can’t be avoided, it can be worked with until you get to a place where the actions of your ex no longer affect you, and you can be happy with them as well as yourself. Consider your ex independently from yourself; you are both entitled to happiness now and in the future. 

Final Thoughts 

When there are no children involved in a divorce, people can go their separate ways without any responsibilities or limitations, but this is not the case for the majority of marriages. Working with an ex-partner is a tricky ongoing situation but it is possible to create the best life quality.  

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