Rainscourt Family Law Solicitors

How to Communicate With a Difficult Ex About Children

It can be very difficult to communicate with your former partner to make arrangements for your children if your relationship is strained or broken.

One of the best ways to avoid conflict is to ensure that everyone is clear on what the arrangements for the children are.  When making arrangements for school holidays, it is best to do this early in the year, and to prepare a detailed calendar setting out how the school holidays are to be shared.  School holiday dates for 2022 have already been released, so if you try to agree on the holiday dates now, there is plenty of time to resolve any issues which cannot be agreed.   

One way of avoiding conflict is to agree on mirror arrangements, where the plans are alternated in “even” and “odd” years, so for example, if the Christmas period is spent with one parent in 2021, it will be spent with the other parent in 2022.

Now that an increasing amount of arrangements are made online, there is no need for one parent to be the sole contact point for the school.  Both parents can usually be registered for communications from school.  Download the necessary apps, such as Parent Pay, so that each parent has full knowledge of the school plans for the children, without needing to rely on one parent to communicate information.  Ensure that you each have your own relationship with the children’s school and avoid using the other parent as the source of information.

When communicating about the children, it is best to stick to one method of communication, such as a specific email address or a WhatsApp group for child arrangements that you have both set up to exchange key information.  Avoid exchanging multiple unnecessary messages on social media.  Think about whether you communicate in a useful and necessary manner, or whether your communications are negative and unnecessary.  

If you find that you are receiving unwanted multiple messages, consider blocking the communication for a period of time.

You can read more about Child Arrangements Orders here.

How to communicate with a difficult ex using WhatsApp
Image by Thomas Ulrich
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