The divorce is final and you’re free at last! Not so fast, my friend. Note that the term describing her, your ex-wife, still contains the word “wife” (as opposed to, say, “that lady”).
There’s a reason for that. She may not be quite ready to release the reigns and faded quietly into your past.
Women sometimes like to continue exercising their pre-divorce powers for months or even years after the courts said you were divorced. Some present a minefield of manipulation, bitterness, anger, desire to dominate, and just plain nuttiness.
An unreasonable ex-wife can present a multitude of problems for you as you look to move on with your live. This article will prepare you to recognize and competently deal with these issues should they arise.
1. You’re not married anymore, so stop acting like you are
The first thing you must do after your divorce is to recognize, accept, and act you are no longer married. Yes, the role of husband is a familiar one and you feel like you can still provide protection and useful guidance for your ex-wife.
Resist the urge. Nothing good can come of it.
With the exception of addressing issues related to your children, you no longer need to be involved with your ex-wife’s life. Decisions about her life, advice on relationship, and any other personal issues have now become the responsibility of her friends and family.
The more you interact with an unreasonable ex-wife, the more you’re opening yourself up for drama. Move on with your life and let you wife live hers, you’ll be a much happier man in the long run.
2. Treat your relationship like a business arrangement
At my job, we have rules regarding our meetings. Every meeting has an agenda and during the meeting we stick to the script. As soon as someone strays from the agenda, we table that discussion for another so that we can accomplish the goal of the meeting.
Our meeting are also rigidly timed. They start when scheduled to start and as soon as our goal is reached the meeting is adjourned.
You should treat your interactions with your ex-wife the exactly same way we conduct business meetings. Any time you get together with your ex you should know what you’re trying to accomplish through the meeting.
So stick to the script, focus on achieving the goal of the meeting, and if discussion veers into a re-hash marital problems be prepared to walk away.
Spend as little time together as possible. Conduct any necessary business by mail or phone, and keep it brief and on topic. The more face time you allow, the greater the opportunity to draw you into emotional, destructive or intrusive oonversations.
Control Your Reactions
Don’t take the bait!! Efforts to anger you should be met with no response. Realize you are not obligated to be involved in a fight or be on the receiving end of verbal abuse. Try letting her know that you are going to hang up or walk away and tell her to get in touch when she once again can talk with you in a reasonable way.
Paper Trail Power
Document your communications with her and save any of those that are in writing. If for any reason you end up back in court, your ability to demonstrate her bad behavior and/or your steady, reasonable responses can weigh in your favor.
Be patient. Look at your friends and acquaintances and you’ll see that most divorcees, excluding those with true psychological issues, will mellow with time and get on with their own lives.
Don’t Stand Alone
Be open to seeking professional help. Divorce isn’t something you’ve been taught to handle and participation in a structured group or even some work with a therapist could be helpful to you. You need to cultivate a new support system and this is one way to start the process.
Brad is a divorced father of two who is navigating the brave new world of dating after divorce. A software developer by trade, he experiments with the latest dating applications and tools so that you don’t have to. Brad writes online dating reviews along with other actionable content for men to improve their quality of life after divorce.