Kansas parents who have a toxic ex-spouse deal with many challenges when it comes to co-parenting. In order to navigate an ex-spouse’s efforts to throw them off course, maintaining personal integrity and looking out for the children’s best interests should be two non-negotiables at their core.
After a divorce with a toxic person, it is necessary for the other individual to identify communication patterns or triggers that can cause a situation to escalate quickly. It could be that there are certain fears that trigger the other spouse, perhaps they are not even based on logic or reality. Interrupting this unhealthy dynamic and forcing it in a more positive direction can be empowering and will protect the children.
New boundaries will need to be set. Some have found that it is best to block a toxic ex-spouse from social media. It may be best to limit communication to just email, unless it is an emergency.
Setting a ‘delay time” for responding to a toxic ex-spouse can be helpful. For example, if a person receives a phone call, text message, or email from their ex that really pushes their buttons, they may decide that it is good to not respond until the next day. This will give them time to think about the best response and giving them time to vent to a friend. A toxic person may simply be looking to bait their ex-spouse. Waiting until the situation has calmed down and then responding can be empowering and diffuse a charged situation.
Co-parenting and parallel parenting have their benefits. However, there are times when these options do not prove to be in a child’s best interest. A concerned parent may wish to discuss their situation with a lawyer. The lawyer may be able to provide information about child custody, visitation rights, child custody modification, and other matters that relate to post-divorce parenting.