Positive and open communication is crucial if you and your former spouse want a respectful and productive co-parenting relationship after divorce. Some of those conversations could be in person or over the phone as you attempt to manage your kids’ schedules, improve decision-making, track expenses, and just be better parents. But in this day and age, most divorced spouses choose to text.
Texting is simple and fast. It also limits awkwardness and negativity when used appropriately — especially if the marriage relationship did not end on the best of terms and keeping conversations limited to only about what is best for the kids is prudent.
That said, we all know how easy it is for even a simple text to get misconstrued or for back-and-forth texting to turn negative.
One minute, everyone is on the same page as co-parents. And the next minute, you are not on speaking terms.
You may even say to yourself, “I wish I had not texted them in the first place!”
We have written a lot about the importance of keeping your emotions in check before, during, and after divorce. If you want to achieve your co-parenting goals, it is important to think as rationally as possible in every situation. This includes finding ways to appropriately text with your former spouse about the kids and do your part to avoid confrontation.
5 Tips to Help You Appropriately Text With Your Former Spouse
Text only with a clear head
Text messages have permanency, so think about what you are texting before you do it. And if you are upset in any way, take a few moments to calm down before returning to the conversation. You never want to text your former spouse about anything — especially when it is about the kids — when your emotions are running high and you feel hurt, angry, and resentful. If you do, you might end up saying something you wish you could take back. If things really go off the rails, and your spouse feels they or the kids have been threatened in some way, that text exchange could end up in the hands of a judge.
Proofread before texting anything
Beyond circling back to fix grammar and spelling mistakes, re-read your text before sending it to ensure what you are sending is what you mean to say and achieves the desired goal of positive communication. All too often, people hurriedly fire off a text without thinking about how the person receiving it will react. Even a well-intentioned text message can be misconstrued if not worded correctly.
Keep text responses casual but short
One tactic that helps you appropriately text with your former spouse is to keep responses brief and clear. Doing so prevents you or them from implying anything or causing an argument (intentionally or unintentionally). It also keeps you and your former spouse focused on the topic at hand. For example: “I will meet you at 6 p.m. to pick up the boys” or “Would you like to split the cost for summer camp next week?” Statements like these lead to more productive responses.
Use email for longer messages
Texts are meant to be seen, received, and responded to quickly. So when more detail or formality is needed for serious conversations, send an email rather than a text. You could also go a step further and text your former spouse with, “I sent you an email just now.” Doing so ensures you are being respectful and picking the right avenue for communicating.
Consider parenting apps instead
We wrote a blog post a few years ago with a list of common co-parenting apps designed to help you and your former spouse be a better team and communicate effectively. You can read that blog by clicking here. And the good news is that there are plenty more co-parenting apps on the market. The trick is sitting down to explore all of them and see which offers the right features and services that matter to you.
Call Nelson Law Group today!!
We truly believe marriage is worth fighting for. But if divorce is the answer, you need a trusted advisor to guide you through each stage of your divorce, help you deal with the stress that naturally comes with that, and create an environment where you have control of divorce. We work diligently to achieve a result that ensures you receive what you are entitled to as you move forward onto the next stage of your life. The Nelson Law Group brings nearly two decades of experience in family law to every case.
Give our knowledgeable staff here at Nelson Law Group, PC, a call if you have any further questions regarding this or any other issue. Our staff is always available. Give us a call today! For more information about Brett A Nelson, click here.
Source: Nelson Law Group