When some marriages finally end, it can be a source of relief. Unfortunately after the divorce papers are signed, it isn’t always the end. Often after the divorce things between the ex-spouses can become uglier.
Here are some tips on how to deal with an ex who is beyond challenging to deal with.
1- Do your best to work out your differences especially when children are involved. Before you act, stop and make sure that you truly have your child’s best interests at heart and you are not reacting in a vindictive way.
2- Since the divorce papers are already signed and finalized, make sure you know what it says in them. With children there should be specific guidelines in writing that pertain to accepted behaviors, schedules and other issues that pertain to visitation and custody. If you are unclear about your rights, speak to an attorney.
3- Do your best to document behavior by your ex that seems like it is in violation of any existing court order. Also document any continued abusive behavior by your ex. Keep a diary where you can record the date and time of incidents that may occur. No matter how small a matter it may seem at the time, documenting it is important. Sometimes problems start out small and escalate. Showing a pattern can help you if the matter goes to court.
4- Do not be afraid to file a court motion against your ex if the ex’s behavior is wrong towards you or your child. Speak to an attorney if you are in doubt.
5- Never ignore abuse because you cannot afford an attorney. There are organizations to help those who are unable to afford legal advice.
6- Even though in many states, one spouse often is court-mandated to pay child support, do your best to not rely on it 100%. Although there are laws to protect children and ensure that their needs are taken care of, single parents need to adjust to the idea that they are now a single-income household. Some ex-spouses will neglect paying their child support out of spite. Although it is wrong, some people’s behavior can be selfish and immoral after a divorce. The single parent needs to learn how to adjust to being financially responsible for the children just in case the ex decides to play games.
7- It can be quit an emotional struggle to deal with an ex who seems to be living their life just to make yours miserable. Don’t give them the power. You are divorced and no longer married and that fact should be celebrated.
8- Do not hesitate to use the legal system when your ex is in violation of it. If you do not abuse it, it will work in your favor. Educate yourself by reading your state’s website regarding the laws of child support, visitation and other divorce and custody related issues.
9- Lean on your friends for support. Having friends in similar situations can be helpful. Not everyone will be going through the same experiences and having friends who are divorced can be educational.
10- Finally, remember your children are the innocent victims in your divorce. Their family was shattered when you got divorced. No matter whose “fault” it was does not matter to a child. Keep your child shielded from the ugliness that remains between yourself and your ex by not speaking about matters that your child doesn’t need to know about.
The financial burdens of being divorced and a single parent can be humbling. Be happy that you have your children and be thankful that you can put your broken marriage behind you. Accepting that you now have a new life is something that many divorced people fight against.
Someday maybe you and your ex can come to a place where the bickering and bad behavior can end. Live each day hopeful that this will happen. In the meantime, enjoy your children and your new life without your spouse.