Tag Archives: disagree

coparenting with ex

How Do You Coparent When You Don’t Get Along?

Divorced parents, who don’t get along, are always asking me how they are supposed to coparent when they are always fighting? The truth is, they can’t. If you can’t get along and are always being harsh or disgruntled with each other, you can’t successfully co-parent. 

You have to make a choice. One parent can take primary custody of the kids and end the co-parenting relationship altogether, or you can decide to make a change. Together the two of you can make the decision to be civil with each other, to be kind, to communicate effectively and calmly because you have to. You have kids that need their parents. Constantly putting them in a toxic environment or bad-mouthing each other in front of your kids, is not helping them. In fact, it is doing the very opposite.

Shift In Dynamics

Someone in the relationship has to start this shift in dynamics. One of you has to make the choice to keep your mouth shut for the sake of your children. Ok, so you don’t agree with your ex’s behaviors, personal choices, or whatever it is that irks you but I am sure you can agree on one all-important thing: You love your kids. You want the best for your kids. 

Your kids need to be in a positive environment. They need to be raised in a place where they feel loved, safe, and comfortable turning to either parent in times of need. As a parent, you need to help guide your children in making the best decisions and you need to set an example. If your children are always seeing you and their father and/or mother arguing, name calling, being verbally abusive, or talking bad about each other behind the others back, you are teaching them that this behavior is ok. And, your child is likely going to experience more feelings of anxiety, depression, and unhealthy coping mechanisms. They will likely withdraw from both of you because they don’t feel safe and secure with you. 

Best for your Child(ren)

You decide. But, the answer is simple. You have to get along with your ex in some capacity in order to raise your children in a healthy environment. To do what is best for them, you need to get past your differences. If you can’t, then it is time to decide who your children should be with. 

Seeking help from a licensed counselor can also help you to determine the best course of action for you and your kids. 

When your BFF doesn’t support your relationship…

You have found “the one.” You are in love and elated. You share your excitement with your best friend expecting to receive support, hugs, and maybe even a “congrats.” But, instead, you are met with disdain. Your friend is less than happy for you. He, she, they thinks you are making a mistake. 

Naturally, you are hurt by this response. This is your best bud and you want he/she/they to be excited for you, supportive, and happy that you have found your person. So what do you do now? You probably feel like you don’t want to talk to this friend about your significant other anymore. But, this is your best friend and your significant other is a huge part of your life. How are you suppose to approach this without getting yourself hurt? Or hurting the friendship?

First of all, who is this friend? Is this a person who usually has good judgment. Do you respect their honest opinion, or are they more of a judgmental-type of person. Are they always looking for the bad to dig out? Are they always poking at the negative? This friend’s personality can help you to determine how much weight you should give to their opinion. 

Second, remember that this is another person’s opinion. It is not yours. In a healthy friendship, there is room for a difference in opinion. You can agree to disagree without harming the relationship. 

Third, listen to your friend. Hear them out. It does not hurt to hear their reasoning and maybe you can provide some insight that they haven’t uncovered or vice versa. It can be helpful to view the relationship from a different angle. There is no need to be dismissive about their opinion. Try to open your mind. 

Fourth, help your friend and your significant other to get to know each other better. Invite your friend to double-date or come over for a game night. Make it a comfortable environment so your friend might be able to see things from your view. 

You don’t have to let this type of thing harm a friendship. You just have to be respectful, calm, and open. Not everyone sees things the same way. Besides, that would be pretty boring, wouldn’t it?