There are plenty of people who have gone through divorces just to get away from a toxic spouse. Whether their spouse was toxic to their children or not, having someone who constantly causes drama is a drain on your time and energy.
Whether your ex-spouse is causing conflicts over custody arrangements or starting trouble with your children’s school, it may be hard to know how to handle the situation civilly. Keeping your cool is important, though, especially if you have to go to court over your ex-spouse’s behaviors.
How can you handle a toxic ex-spouse and keep the peace?
If you want to handle a toxic ex and keep the peace, it’s important to maintain your own sense of calm. Do your best not to let them get under your skin. If they claim they’re going to seek full custody or make statements that throw up red flags about how they’re treating your children, reach out to your attorney right away. Don’t respond to text messages or calls about these issues until you’ve had time to look at your own legal options and have a balanced response in hand.
Another thing to do to keep things civil is to keep your kids out of it. Using children as pawns or messengers is unacceptable under any circumstances. If your ex sends messages through your children, speak with your ex and say that they need to call you directly. If it continues, you may want to discuss the concept of parental alienation with your attorney. Your kids don’t deserve to be caught in the middle.
Finally, develop your own coping skills. If you’re having anxiety or stress about seeing your ex-spouse or interacting with them when you pick up your kids, it’s time to talk to a counselor or therapist. You can include your attorney on the list of people to talk to when legal threats are made. That way, you’ll be able to temper your own response and know the reality of what your ex-spouse can or cannot do. You may even be able to get help minimizing their toxic actions toward yourself or your children.