Managing Conflicts with Exes
There are many conflicts that can arise from your ex-partner when you have decided to start a new family with someone else. Stirring the pot seems to be the easiest thing when one of the ends is feeling uncomfortable or likes to generate conflict into an already difficult mix. You realize that your ex or your new partner's ex is constantly pounding on you with the excuse that they want to hear about the kids or any other thing.
Two very important things that exes must realize are:
- New partners and old partners will inevitably have more contact and more often.
- Getting along with the exes will help the kids adjust to their new situation where they are being raised in two homes.
But dealing with exes can sometimes be a rather challenging feat. The way we handle conflicts will largely determine our state of mind and the success of the new family.
Consider applying the following tips to managing conflict with exes.
Clearly Set the Rules
Blended families can be full of conflicts. But clearly setting down basic ground rules can help avoid them. When deciding what these rules will be, always work in the best interest of the children. Many times, house rules set for children in a new home will clash with the ones established on their old one. Try to find a balance point on how will these new set of regulations be handled.
It is also crucial to set boundaries in this new relationship with your ex. Decide on how will conflicts be effectively resolved. You do not have to be friends but you do have to commit to staying in touch with each other.
It is Not a Competition
Children are usually the point of conflict of many issues with the ex. You do not have to compete with your new partner's ex for the children´s fondness. Keep in mind that they do not want or need a new parent and you should never aim to become one. Trust that children are mature enough to define new relationships in their lives and maintain the ones they have already established.
Set Communication Protocols
Communications technology has made it so easy for people to stay in touch. This also allows for unnecessary utterance and asphyxiating situations. If you have an ex that likes to rant on the phone, for instance, then agree on making communication in written form only. In the case that they want to know how kids are doing, direct communication with them is an option if the child is old enough.
Avoid answering to spats and petty messages. Giving undivided attention to a raving person can be counterproductive.
Show That You Care
Always show that you are acting in the best interest of the new relationship. Work on building up the best way to manage the new situation and the ones that will arise.
Whenever you see a conflict with an ex looming around the corner, stay true to your senses. At all times stay calm and, if possible, try to make the other part come to reason. Always try to search inside of you if you are to blame for anything and humbly acknowledge. They say that a soft answer turns away wrath. If you show yourself cooperative and willing to solve contentions, you are on the right path to keeping the peace.