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Co-Parenting With a Difficult Ex

Parents sitting on opposite sides of a couch, sad child in the forefront

Co-parenting can be challenging even under the best of circumstances. But if you're dealing with a difficult co-parent, it can be even more challenging.

For co-parents dealing with a difficult ex, keep the following tips in mind.

Set Boundaries

The parents need to establish what they will and will not tolerate. This will help co-parents communicate more effectively and also help them stay calm in difficult situations. Additionally, co-parents should be assertive and firm in what they expect from their ex. It's also important to be consistent in enforcing these boundaries.

Avoid Phone Calls if Possible

While a quick phone call to confirm children’s schedules or to let their ex know that they’ve arrived at a destination to pick up children can be expected, any long-term planning or potentially lengthy phone calls should be avoided. This is because if things were to get out of hand, there would not be a record of what was said in a phone call compared to an electronic or handwritten transcription of the interaction. Instead, if you need to communicate with your ex, make sure to do so via text message or email so there is a digital copy of your communication for future reference.

Be Patient

This can be difficult, especially if one co-parent feels they are acting more level-headed than the other parent. It takes time to adjust to any new parenting dynamic and parents should not only be patient with their ex but themselves and their children. Everyone should have a little grace as things eventually fall into place.

Put Children First

Above all else, the children's best interests in the relationship should be the top priority, regardless of disagreements between the co-parents. This means that parents should make decisions thinking about the children first and putting their personal needs aside.

Find a Support System

Especially when dealing with a difficult ex, it’s essential to have a support system. That could be friends, family, counselors, therapists, or any other individuals a parent feels comfortable talking to about their experiences.

Get Legal Help

When it comes to co-parenting matters, if a parent isn’t making any headway with their ex, legal help may be the next best step. A family law attorney can advise on what actions a parent should take when dealing with a difficult ex.

If you find yourself in this situation, the law team at Peterson White, LLP is here to help. Our attorneys pride ourselves on being honest and trustworthy to provide the best experience possible for our clients. See how we can help you with your family law matter by contacting us online or by phone. (855) 919-4124