Co-parenting can be challenging for divorced parents. When one parent remarries, this can begin an entirely new set of obstacles for the families. Learning to create a harmonious ‘blended’ family and making peace with your ex-spouse may not seem likely, but it is possible.
According to Dr. Ilona Boniwell, Principal Lecturer in Positive Psychology at the University of East London, UK, there are a few helpful ideas to help make you cope with the bitterness that can linger after a divorce.
- Divorces are like fingerprints, no two are alike. What may have been deemed fair in one circumstance may not be the resolution in another. If you find yourself comparing your situation with another, it may be helpful to accept that things are not always fair. That may seem like a lot to do, but it is an important step to a peaceful family dynamic.
- With acceptance in mind, ask yourself: Given my situation, what do I hope for myself and my children and what examples do I want to set?
- Find benefits to your current situation.
- According to positive psychology advocates, forgiveness is the key to moving on, but can also be the most challenging. You may want to try half-forgiveness. Dr. Boniwell wrote of her own experience where she wrote a letter forgiving everything she could while leaving out the things she could not. This is for your own benefit and you do not need to send the letter.
- Finally, whether your ex’s new partner or your current partner’s ex, try to see that person as they are and with an unbiased perspective.
Moving on is possible, whether you ex-spouse is still in your life or not. Hopefully, these tips will help with the process.
Source: Psychologies, “Can you make peace with a former partner,” Dr. Ilona Boniwell, July 14, 2014