Know how to handle a toxic ex during divorce

The decision to divorce is never one to take lightly. While there are some people who can work toward the legal end of the marriage in a mature manner, others can't. Instead, one party is left dealing with a person who is toxic. This makes an already difficult situation even more challenging.

When you are in this position, you might find that every decision turns into a massive disagreement. The toxic ex is going to do everything they can to make you as miserable as possible. Dealing with this can add more stress to your life.

Focusing on the children

Every decision that you make regarding child custody must be made for the good of the children. It is hard to do this when you have a toxic ex. They are going to become so focused on making your life more miserable that they don't think about how their actions can impact the children. Having a detailed child custody agreement is one way that you can combat this because your ex is bound by the terms of the agreement once it is ordered.

Know when to back away

When matters turn into arguments, you have to know when to disengage and walk away. Your ex might follow and continue to try to make their points and infuriate you. The intent here is to make you upset, so you should try to remain calm. If you do lose your temper, there is a good chance that they will try to use that against you in court. Once both adults have calmed down, it might be possible to come back to discuss the matter. In some cases, you shouldn't continue discussions alone with your ex. You might use a mediator, a family court judge or another professional to help ensure things remain on track.

Stay safe

If there is a chance that your ex might turn violent, you have to ensure that you remain safe. Find your trusted safety net, which can be as few as two to three people, whom you know will help you if needed. You might need to get a protective order if there are threats of violence or if things have turned violent.

A toxic ex is going to try to wear you down so they can have their own way during the high-conflict divorce. Reducing your exposure to their antics and not showing emotion can help to protect your mental state, but it might cause the other person to act out even more. Discussing the situation with your attorney can give you an idea of what options you have so you can choose one that you feel is in your best interests.

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Beverly L . Brennan A PARTNER AT MCLAUGHLIN & STERN, LLP - NAPLES, FLORIDA ATTORNEY & COUNSELOR AT LAW

Beverly L. Brennan, P.A.
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