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Setting boundaries with your ex when co-parenting

On Behalf of | Jan 18, 2023 | Child Custody

Setting boundaries with an ex can be challenging, especially when parenting is involved. You and your ex most likely want the best for your children, but it’s not unusual to see West Virginia parents have different ideas of what “the best” looks like. If you and your ex clash over parenting decisions, especially if your ex tries to tell you how to parent, it can make you feel inadequate or like your ex is controlling. Luckily, there are a few ways to set healthy boundaries that still keep your ex’s views in mind.

How to set boundaries

Setting co-parenting boundaries isn’t about telling your ex what to do. That being said, it can feel like it’s easy to fall into the trap of arguing, especially because children are part of the mix. When you’re trying to set boundaries with an ex you co-parent with, it’s always good to:

• Communicate clearly and assertively with your children along with your ex. This is perhaps most relevant when it comes to deciding on rules within each household; whether or not your ex agrees with the rules in your home, be clear that they are the rules within your home, even if the rules differ at your ex’s home.
•Set limits on communication. If your ex constantly calls or texts you about parenting, set a limit on how often you will communicate. You can also consider speaking only during scheduled visitation times.
• Do not engage in arguments about parenting. If your ex tries to start a fight about parenting or the divorce, calmly explain that you are not going to discuss it and end the conversation.
• Seek professional help if needed. If setting boundaries with your ex is proving difficult, seek professional help from a therapist or counselor who can assist you in developing a plan to deal with difficult conversations and behaviors.
• Take time for yourself. Boundary-setting can be draining, both emotionally and physically. Be sure to take care of yourself by taking breaks as needed.

Managing interference from your ex

Handling your ex’s interference in parenting can be tricky and challenging, but it is possible with the right approach. Remember that assertiveness and boundaries are essential. Ultimately, as long as you keep the children in mind and focus on your boundaries instead of your ex’s actions, you stand a better chance of keeping those boundaries steady.