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How can you talk about custody with a stressful co-parent?

Dealing with stress can wear someone down over time. When a co-parent is the source of this stress, you may not know how to discuss a topic like custody without it ending in an argument.

Knowing how to deal with conflicts with a co-parent can help you both to move forward in your lives.

Expect to feel negativity

According to Psychology Today, you can prepare for intense conversations by practicing calming breathing exercises before you begin. Since you cannot totally avoid stress, taking steps to alleviate your anger can help you enter the conversation with a clear mind.

This mindfulness can allow you to cover more topics without getting sidetracked by outbursts or insults.

Choose your words carefully

While you may want to be direct and personal, make sure to remember that reacting emotionally can lead to continued arguments that block productive communication. Bringing up old problems you had with your co-parent in the past can also cause a rift between you both as you try to handle important topics.

Leave any sensitive information, like who your co-parent is dating or what is going on in his or her personal life, out of the conversation.

Focus on the facts

Try to be as formal as you can whenever you both need to talk. Focus only on the needs of your children and any other relevant issues, and do not bring up any potentially negative or personal topics.

Discussing custody is important for co-parents, but it does not have to make you feel overwhelmed. Learning how to properly manage tense conversations can help you and your children to thrive.

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