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Getting along with the Ex

Posted by on Aug. 21, 2013 at 1:58 PM
  • 45 Replies

A poster recently took issue with my saying getting along with your Ex is beneficial to the mutual children. So I would like to know what you think, how important is getting along with your Ex/BM? Is there any benefit to your children when their parents get along? Or do you think it doesn't matter?

Have you had any experience where if there had been a better relationship between the parents, the children could have benefited in some way? 

Wife, Mother and Career Woman living in Jamaica

by on Aug. 21, 2013 at 1:58 PM
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by Gold Member on Aug. 21, 2013 at 2:05 PM
I try to get along with my ex. We do most of the time- I have accepted him for who he is as a parent. Our kids don't try and pit us against each other and if one of them gets in trouble the punishment will go to both houses. Also they don't worry about us fighting or not being able to have us in the same room.
by on Aug. 21, 2013 at 2:14 PM
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I have an order of protection against my ex.. and his ex we stomach each other.. its probably mean thing to say but its true. She does all sorts of things and tells her daughter (A) all sort of ugly things abt us but to keep peace I don't say much.. she told A that she wasn't my daughters sister in anyway because dh n I weren't legally married. We have been together close to 2yrs and plan on gettin married but currently can't afford getting married since half of his whole check goes to child support.. who in their right mind tells a 7yr old child that she isn't loved and isn't part of her daddys family.. seriously.. I think it just depends on the situation..
by on Aug. 21, 2013 at 2:17 PM

I have tried tons of times....I do think the kids benefit when this happens and also disciplining can be so much easier as well! But it doesn't always happen.....Our BM is a liar, instigator and doesnt really care about her kids and everyone we know has seen I try to be Civil when I see her.....But yes I do think kids benefit from it...and plus I dont think they need the drama when they are already going through their own things.

by on Aug. 21, 2013 at 2:19 PM

I am not the Ex, but I can tell by my DH getting along with his XW (BM), the SDs' transitions from one house to another have been smooth. The SDs don't witness any unneccesary fights/conflicts. The cordial working relationship between the BF and the BM also provides them with certain sense of stability. They know that they have to deal with 2 sets of rules, but they know that with most important issues relating to their safety and their well-beings, both houses are always on the same page.

by Ruby Member on Aug. 21, 2013 at 2:21 PM

 i think its best for the children. i realize that it is not always possible, hell even often possible, at least at first.

my kids dad and i hated each other at first but we get along great now.

i do not like BM much but i am civil and polite with her. always have been.

by Platinum Member on Aug. 21, 2013 at 2:36 PM

I am not friends with BF but I like how spicy worked it... I am 'cordial' with my XH.  We don't 'fight' or exchange heated words or have difficult discussions with each other if the kids are around.  We do that through email.  We have NEVER had difficult discussions with the kids around however, married or divorced. 

I do think, however, it would be more difficult in our situation if BF had the kids more often.  As we  have it now (his choice, I'm not 'keeping' the kids from him), he has them less than 15% of the time, so typically I do what I want, he visits with the kids and doesn't set down any 'hard and fast' rules for them, nor punishments (they're not really with him long enough to GET into too much trouble, plus, they're really good kids to start with), so we have little to get caught up with in the mean time.  If we had more of a 50/50 situation, I don't think our arrangement would work well, or we'd at least have more conflicts arise than we do now.  Though, after all this time, I'm also sure that he and I would have figured things out by now and we'd still not discuss the kids in front of them as neither of us feel that's appropriate (one of the few things we agree on 100%).  I'm not a drama queen and BF doesn't like conflict.  We take our discussions to email and leave them there, and even if we're in the midst of discussing something big about the kids in email, we are still cordial towards each other at drop off/pick ups, we don't bring it with us.

The benefit I see is, the boys have NEVER been asked to 'take sides', nor felt the need to do so, as they are NOT involved in our discussions. 

by on Aug. 21, 2013 at 2:45 PM

I actually saw the difference with my skids. When we first got them BM caused a lot of grief. Passing messages through the kids, undermining dh's authority, picking fights, etc... Then one day she just quit doing all that. Almost immediately the skids behavior improved, especially the 2 girls. They learned that they could no longer play mom and dad off each other. Discipline became more cohesive all around.

So I saw it is a worthy goal, but unfortuneatly not one that works for everyone.

by Ruby Member on Aug. 21, 2013 at 2:56 PM
I absolutely agree with you. My situation would be so much better if we could get along. I tend to be the one who gives in and goes along with whatever for the sake of my child. I try extremely hard but it fails to be recognized. I let the petty things go as much as possible. I try very hard to have no conflict and to start no wars. But the other parent is just not willing. He has an ax to grind and he doesn't care what the consequences are. My dd would benefit very much if we could get along. I've been on both sides. Getting along and not getting along. And getting along has much more positives than not getting along.
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by on Aug. 21, 2013 at 3:13 PM
It is definitely beneficial to the children, and the adults. It took years, but, we all as adults get along now. I will go to lunch with my ss BM. It makes for more peace in both homes.
by Ruby Member on Aug. 21, 2013 at 3:14 PM
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I think it makes a tremendous difference when the BPs can get along.  I also think BPs getting along with SPs is better for the children, but much less so.

I have witnessed it with DDs.  Once I got to the point where I found neutrality with my ex and didn't hate SM because she was OW, everything was easier for everyone.  Even me!  YDD specifically commented on how much she likes that we can sit together at her performances or have a conversation without any tension.

And getting along with the SP really just makes the primary BP relationship better.  Think about it - BF married this woman.  He loves her.  She is most important in his life.  Of course he will be defensive of her if I hate on her. 

Now I am not talking best friends or even social friends.  Let me be clear - I don't like BF as a person.  But I don't dislike him.  I simply get along with him when we have to have contact or conversation.

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