We're About More Than Divorce

Are parenting issues causing continual fights after divorce?

Arguing with a spouse or otherwise not seeing eye-to-eye may have contributed to your divorce. Of course, distancing yourself from your former spouse does not always prevent arguments even now because you have children together and are trying to co-parent.

Though co-parenting is commonly considered the best arrangement for Oregon children and those elsewhere because it allows them to build strong relationships with both parents, you and your ex may have a difficult time working out all the details. In fact, you may feel that your divorce did nothing to lessen the conflict between the two of you because you continue to fight over parenting issues.

What can you do?

First, you may want to see what common threads exist between your arguments. Do you bring up the same topics over and over? Are the arguments over petty subjects that have nothing to do with the kids? In the latter case, it may help you to simply detach from such arguments. Rather than giving your ex the satisfaction of getting a rise out of you when he or she attempts to pick a fight over nothing, you may want to refrain from engaging.

If you fight over issues regarding the children, you may want to determine whether you can find solid solutions to end the arguments. Some tips to consider include the following:

  • If you argue over how to discipline the children, remember that each of you is different. Unless the other parent’s actions put your children in harm’s way, you may need to simply accept his or her differences in parenting practices.
  • If you fight over the amount of time each of you spends with the kids, you may want to create a formal parenting plan and schedule. Rather than coming up with a schedule week to week, you may want to create a long-term routine.
  • If your ex attempts to bully you, you may need to set strict boundaries and uphold those boundaries. However, if his or her actions put you or your children in danger, you may need to consider obtaining a restraining order.
  • If the issues revolve around child support, remember that the court sets the child support order, and your and your ex must follow it. If terms cause problems, you may need to request a review and modification from the court.

If co-parenting issues continue despite your efforts to find solutions to the problems, you may need to revisit your child custody arrangement. It can be difficult to feel as if you are going back to the drawing board on custody terms, but in some cases, it may be necessary.