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How can you handle a difficult co-parent?

On Behalf of | Nov 17, 2023 | Family Law

If someone is a difficult spouse, there is a fair chance they will be an equally difficult co-parent. Some people are just that way, and nothing you can do will change them. If you share children, then you are going to need to learn how to work with them without letting their attempts to antagonize you work. 

Here are some tips that can help:

Don’t rise to their attempts to bait you

Your ex may be angry that you divorced them. So, they may try to antagonize you when you have dealings with them about the children. Try to stay calm and see it for what it is.

Minimize contact

The more difficult they are, the more you may need to minimize contact. That might mean restricting communication to email or a parenting app and having someone else take your place at the handovers of the children. 

In cases where it is slightly less of a problem, conducting handovers in public places and reminding them that you are only willing to discuss things related to the children may be enough to keep them on their best behavior.

Do not be tempted to use your children as go-betweens

However difficult you find it to deal with your ex, it’s not your children’s job to run messages between you. Expecting them to do this, especially when a message is likely to be ill-received by the other party, can add to the fine balancing act they may already feel they have to perform to avoid upsetting either of you. They should feel free to enjoy time with and love each parent without fearing it will upset their other parent.

Learning how to create a custody agreement that provides for possible co-parenting challenges can go a long way to ease future cooperation for everyone’s benefit.