Split between a couple has always been a sensitive issue. It is never easy to go through the painful process of separation and later, divorce. At times, it’s not just two people into consideration, rather a family.
No matter how ugly your relationship has been with your ex-spouse, things don’t end at divorce.
Post-divorce, certain marital issues remain unsettled even after the ink has dried on the decree. Some very complicated bilateral issues cannot be resolved easily. One of them is deciding on the custodian of children.
If you are having a narcissistic person and are co-parenting with this toxic ex, realize, the burden of healthy parenting lies on your shoulders.
How to co-parent with a difficult ex?
If you are dealing with a narcissist co-parent, let’s lift the curtain on some possibilities of co-parenting with a toxic ex-spouse.
1. Save your children from being sandwiched between you both
Better be aware, co-parenting with a toxic ex means the toxic exes or emotionally manipulative parents would play all emotional games to keep you entrenched in the relationship even after a brutal breakup. They would try to entice you to take all the blame, and they can exploit children for this purpose.
Don’t pay any heed to their wicked tricks, and try to save your children from getting used against you.
When you are co-parenting with a toxic ex, set a boundary of respect for you and your co-parent, which is not to be violated by any of two.
2. Make children accept the bitter reality with sheer empathy
Children who are equally dependent on both their parents are not likely to accept the family breaking apart. They are the ones who never have a say in such an important matter, though they are most likely to get affected by this decision.
Divorcing parents need to convince their children that they will remain a family even after this crucial move. Parents ought to put children’s minds at rest. They need to reassure the kids of their lasting family bond.
3. Neither escalate nor let the legal boundary be escalated
Try not to overpower your legal rights with regard to children. While co-parenting with a toxic ex, never let the other co-parent snatch your share, simultaneously.
You need to acknowledge your rights. Don’t let things be dominated by the other parent when you are co-parenting with a toxic ex. You ought to practice your influence on the kids, you ought to give them decent life values, and you have every right to it.
Never compromise on retaining your rights.
4. Set boundaries around the school, home, and society
While co-parenting with a difficult ex, one should decide about setting boundaries with ex-spouses. Creating boundaries with the ex-spouse will encourage less toxicity into the relationship you share or the child shares.
The kids need to be familiar with all the zones of life from the very beginning. They need to be taught how to behave in a certain environment.
You need to keep them away from the dictation of a toxic parent. Along with co-parenting boundaries, create awareness in them regarding all sectors of life, from personal to professional to social, all spheres of life need to be disciplined and diligently carried out.
5. Cultivate self-dependence in them since a young age
Being independent is extremely important for children, whether or not the relationship between parents is strangulated.
In the video below, Sara Zaske discusses her new book and shares parenting styles that can make children self-reliant with several instances and anecdotes.
Sooner or later, they will discover the plights of life, including the presence of a toxic parent if you are co-parenting with a toxic ex. Until then, they would be able to stand on their own two feet. They wouldn’t be seeking support to cope with the shortcomings.
They would definitely learn to advance by themselves if taught to live on their own hump.
6. Let children communicate with the other parent
Avoid any foul play in the relationship if your relationship was toxic with your ex, itis not necessary that your partner will pour toxicity on the child as well.
Do not hinder the communication or bonding time between your child and your partner. They should be free to visit each other on all occasions. Also, avoid speaking ill of your partner in front of your child.
Every parent deserves a loving relationship with their child. Therefore, support it and be mindful of what you say about the other parent in front of your children.
7. Satisfy their financial needs
Financial stress is one of the most common co-parenting problems as the division of parental responsibilities can be difficult while co-parenting with a difficult ex.
It would be an understatement to say; their financial requirements should be fulfilled. In fact, you need to see their expenses very compassionately. You need to be very keen on it.
Children who are deprived of certain benefits in life develop a low-esteem.
Children often compare themselves, and they want to have everything better vis-a-vis other children. You oughtn’t to spend miserly on them. A parent should try to compensate them with all they want.
On a side note, you need to carefully study every wish of theirs before fulfilling.
No child deserves to grow with an intimidating adult. The best thing could be, if you are co-parenting with a toxic ex and you’re aware of it, put all your heart and soul into winning the custody of your kids. Nothing could be safer than that, on a wiser note.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.