Being single again after spending time in a relationship is a very hard challenge. Normally there a lot of painful stages which need to be conquered during the process. If you have been unfortunate enough to have been in a cancerous relationship you have no doubt found out the true colours of your ex. My experience was to encourage a rational approach, which isn’t always easy as emotions are running high and not always stable, a bit like the weather. Try to be intelligent and promote common sense, of course there will be money concerns and for many people their first real dealing with a lawyer and at times the language used seems foreign but the invoice is real! But when children are involved I urge you to take a step and a deep breath and think of the children and park your feelings for your ex. Not for a second do I support the easy option just a more intelligent one and intelligent doesn’t mean stupid.
There are cases when you must stick to your guns and make a firm stance, not to be friendly and not to engage with your ex. The smart thing and intelligent thing is to recognise if you are dealing with an abusive spouse, somebody out to hurt you or your children. In these instances let your lawyer do the talking on your behalf.
Unfortunately once a relationship breaks down we tend to see a side of our ex we didn’t know existed. So be aware of who you are dealing with and expect the unexpected. For me I expected the worse and anything better was a welcomed surprise.
Be prepared for the “bar stool lawyers,” these are your friends, family and colleagues that have the advice tailored just for you. Winning at all costs is their mantra and this formula always ends in disaster. There is never a winner in a breakup and especially not when children are involved. It is never fair but you have to deal with it! Sticking your head in the sand is a poor strategy and will serve no purpose for you. Divorce is stressful enough and you will need to have your wits about you for the best outcome for everyone involved.
It is not unusual to feel wronged, a huge injustice has been served up to you. After all, all those years you committed yourself to the marriage, everything you gave up for them and you are the one that does everything with the children! They must be unfit to have custody! Of course in an abusive relationship this is true. This type of person possess a powerful sense of justice and self-righteousness. They also work from a tiny piece of the truth, which makes their claims that much more powerful! Outside that playing the victim is a poor strategy and one always gets caught out. In essence you are not fooling anyone just causing more hurt and damage to your family.
Attention here comes the“Control Freak.” This trait definitely existed during your marriage and now the relationship has ended their behaviour will escalate! The control freak will easily hide your assets, many of them work in finance and have the tools and skill set in succeeding. This person wants to win and rarely has any real emotional feelings. If you are dealing with this type prepare yourself to work harder and do not be intimidated by them, they want you too and are unprepared for you to stand up for yourself.
As if the control freak wasn’t extreme enough you might be dealing with someone who is completely self-serving and self-centred, the Narcissist! But perhaps you already know them from their need to be right, always seeking admiration, the need to be right always and even criticising you behind closed doors for not living up to their expectations. Now that the relationship has ended they will completely dismiss your needs. The end means the end and it is a fight for survival to the bitter end. This person has already forgotten any good that was in your marriage. A normal individual will remember the good times and this will assist them in achieving a sense of balance when it comes down to splitting things up fairly. A narcissist will try to break up your friendships and undermine you, even with your children.
Your ex may be out for payback a sort of crusader, an avenger, a super victim or a control freak gone nuclear! They just don’t want to win they want to see you loose, knocked out and with nothing. They want to see you hurt and are motivated by your misery, they will not be satisfied until you feel pain. I have no idea how somebody arrives with such a devastating personality but rest assure most people and at least the people who matter to you are all too aware there are two sides to the tale. Revenge is a fools game and achieves nothing but hurt and devastation, these people are not in touch with reality.
Time is a great healer and years from now you may be in a position to have a normal and respectful relationship with your ex.