(Be the) X factor, an instrument to resolve dispute
Most everything that you know tells you that you will fail in your efforts to work through conflict with your ex. Most everyone will tell you that there is no need to speak with your ex and that you will be sending a mixed message to your ex if you do. Your parents will wonder what you are thinking when you speak of communicating with your ex over anything and what you must have been drinking to come up with such a crazy idea.
The traditional perception has always been that there is no need for parents to communicate with one another after they divorce. The whole reason that people divorce is to create distance between both parties. The whole standard thought process has me shaking my head. Remember, I’m the person who has been handling divorce cases for the past twenty years. I have spent thousands of hours handling custodial disputes.
Remember that the same people who tell you that there is no need to communicate with your ex are the same people who will talk behind your back, saying how sad it is that your children have to go through this divorce. Communicating effectively with your ex will require you to focus on the needs of your child and not delve into the problems that you and your ex had during your marriage.
If you can come up with a game plan that actually benefits your children post-divorce, why listen to the naysayers? Remember that people used to think that the earth was flat and that by sailing east off the coast of Spain across the Atlantic they would fall off the face of the earth. The earth used to be the center of the universe and Pluto was a planet not long ago.
Onward through history people have believed in falsities because that’s what they were taught. People kept certain belief systems because they made them feel safe and secure in how they faced their world. Remember that divorce is something that is relatively new in this country. Many of our parents and our grandparents believed that people should remain married. Divorce, for many, is frowned upon, and the advice provided to people going through divorce is given based on their preconceived notions of the evils of divorce.
What do you possibly have to lose by taking an approach that can help reduce conflict with your ex and create a better life for your children and for you? You have nothing to lose in attempting to come up with an approach through which you can communicate with your ex and minimize conflict. The truth is that you can be that “X factor” that can settle a conflict when no one else believes it is possible. You must believe that any conflict has the potential to be resolved, and you must try to make every plausible attempt to resolve whatever issue is in dispute.
Every time I walk into a conference room, I know that, for many people, there is a ninety-nine percent chance that the parties will reach a solution if they just talk and communicate through the issues. Whether a solution can be reached is completely up to the parents. Most of the time, I find the solution is fairly obvious. What is equally obvious is the party’s inability to see it based on their lacking ability to communicate.
The way the legal community resolves family law litigation involving children is changing and the common factor for that change involves you. You are the person who can, should, and will resolve the controversy. All you need is a little help. We—the lawyers and the therapists—can provide you the tools to better assist you in interacting with your ex.