One of the main reasons you’re getting a divorce is because of your difficulty communicating with each other. So now, when you’d like to package every problem into a box with a neat little bow and walk away, you’re told you need to communicate with each other, effectively. Communicate often. Communicate in such a way neither of you feels anger or hurt. The irony… if you could do that you might not be getting a divorce in the first place. If you have kids in the mix, how you talk to your spouse during a divorce is important.
The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place. – George Bernard Shaw
10 Tips: How to Talk to Your Spouse During a Divorce
If your spouse has anger management problems, it’s best to keep communications between attorneys or allow your attorney to communicate directly with your ex. But if you have to use an attorney for every minor issue, it takes time – and money – when you could do it yourself. Ways to facilitate better discussions during a divorce include:
- A mediator or communication coach can help structure the methods and individual boundaries for future productive communication. You may need a mediator to help you get started or to work with you throughout the divorce process.
- Avoid conversations when you’re emotional or feeling fragile; only speak when you are calm and “under control.”
- Don’t shout during conversations and strive to keep a civil, even friendly tone of voice when speaking to your spouse.
- If you can, avoid social media during the divorce process and request your spouse do the same. Do not post anything that relates to your case or your relationship. This may delay your divorce proceedings and could come back to bite you.
- If you wouldn’t say it aloud in court, don’t text it to anyone.
- Set communication boundaries early on: Agree on what is a reasonable length of time in which to respond to a significant request.
- Specify your preferred method of communication. Perhaps email communications work best. Maybe you want phone calls limited to emergency-only. Whatever methods of communication you want, establish the boundaries early.
- The flip side to using your attorney to talk to your spouse during a divorce is that it may appear overly combative, threatening, confrontational, or – even worse – ridiculous. “You couldn’t just tell me what time to be at soccer practice?!”
- Try to block your baggage. It’s an emotional time for you both, with good and bad memories interjecting themselves into every conversation. Focus on the issues at hand and concentrate on here and now. When you discuss custody and visitation (called “legal decision-making” and “parenting time”), remember – this is about (the kids), not you.
- You don’t have to immediately respond to every communication from your spouse. Trivial issues can be addressed at a time you choose and as part of a larger conversation.
Best Legal Choices
When you talk to your spouse during a divorce, remember you are both going through changes and when it’s all said and done, you truly want the best for each other and your family. Divorce in Arizona can be a process that restores a sense of wholeness and wellness to you and your family because it is a no-fault divorce state. You simply acknowledge that the marital partnership is broken; not you, your spouse, your children or loved ones. Choosing an easy, collaborative divorce with BestLegalChoices may be the best decision you ever make.
Heidi has been a family counselor for 16 years and has worked primarily with separating/divorcing and high conflict families for the past 4 years. Heidi’s goal is to help families reduce the need for future litigation, build resilience and healing, and help families focus on the best interests of the children and parents alike.