A divorce has a way of testing its participants, and communication that was once effortless can become a challenge. Despite the feelings you may have about your spouse during the divorce process, it’s important to practice mature and respectful communication to keep a divorce amicable and increase the likelihood of a favorable and fair settlement.
As hostile or contentious as your divorce may be, finding a way to improve communication can create a more supportive environment for your children, make it easier to discuss sensitive subject matters during divorce proceedings, and minimize the time it takes to reach a resolution.
Take note of these seven tips you can use to keep your communications on track and maintain an amicable relationship through your divorce:
When in Doubt, Write it Out
Talking with a hostile ex can bring up a lot of tension and frustration, making it hard to stay rational and level-headed or even speak in a kind tone. It’s easy to slip up and say something you may regret in the moment, so if you’re not sure whether you can handle in-person or verbal communication, try writing out what you need to say.
Email can be a good way to communicate about especially sensitive topics, allowing both parties time to review what they say before sharing and giving space to process as the conversation goes on.
Schedule Regular Check-ins
If you are co-parenting children together, it can be valuable to schedule regular check-ins with one another to ensure you are on the same page. In marriage, it’s easy to communicate small updates or news throughout the day or week, but when divorced, you miss out on those opportunities.
Regular check-ins provide the opportunity to share family updates, discuss any schedule changes or challenges coming up, and maintain consistency between the two homes while honoring boundaries.
Stay Honest, Yet Tactful When Talking to the Kids
Honesty is crucial when talking with kids about divorce, but honesty without tact can be cruel. For example, kids don’t need to know about the late-night arguments and details of what frustrates one parent about another.
Keep your communication open and transparent with kids, but use discretion and come to an agreement about how many details will be shared so one parent doesn’t throw the other under a bus.
Keep Common Goals in Mind
It’s easy to get distracted and caught up in the minutiae of the divorce process, so keep your common goals in mind to keep the conversations productive. Focus on the issues at hand rather than digging too much into the emotions of it. If you veer off subject, try to bring it back or wait until you’ve both cooled off to pick it back up.
Use Discretion on Social Media
Social media can be used against you in divorce proceedings if you use it to speak poorly of your ex or share personal information. It can be utilized to portray a lack of civility and poor judgment, which doesn’t make your case any stronger.
Use a Mediator
Communication is difficult, and communicating amicably through something as challenging as a divorce can feel like an impossible task. When you are using all of the above communication tips and still running into problems, sometimes reaching out to a professional is the best route to a solution.
Divorce mediators are trained to act as neutral third-party facilitators to guide the conversation around your divorce settlement and see to it that both parties can reach an agreed solution. They can help keep your conversation on track and keep emotions at bay.
If you’re struggling to keep your communication open and amicable in your divorce, reach out to the experts at Natalie Baird Mediations to see the difference professional help can make.