Yesterday’s tip was kind of heavy, so let’s keep it on the lighter side today. Are you ready? Here goes. Pick your battles! You obviously have disagreements, life style differences, and major issues with your ex, or else you wouldn’t be divorced. So don’t act all surprised when you and your ex spouse have disputes when it comes to raising the kids. Even happily married couples have incongruities when it comes to how to bring up children. Even if you are raised in the same culture and socio-economic status, you will have disagreement because you were yourselves raised by different parents with slightly different values. So it stands to reason that you will be confronted with one situation after another where you believe one way and your ex will believe a different way. So what to do? Here’s my go-to course of action when you can’t see eye-to-eye on kid issues: When it comes to the everyday small decisions, pick your battles. If he’s okay with cereal and pot-tarts for breakfast and you believe in a heart healthy diet of only organic steel-cut oats, then deal with it! If you believe the kids should be in bed by 8:00pm sharp and he allows them to fall asleep in front of the television watching Barney and Teletubbies non stop, then, unless it’s affecting their studies…do as Elsa says and let it go! You believe in a bath every single night without fail, and he says one night without a bath won’t hurt…I say, zip your lips. Trust me, as your kids grow, so do the complications of child-raising.
Right now it is imperative that you form a partnership and trust with your ex. You are both in the same business…the business of raising happy, healthy, productive member of society. So pick your battles. Don’t make him/her out to be the bad guy all the time. Support their efforts to help you raise your children. Be kind, less judgmental, and for goodness sake, don’t undermine their attempts at doing what they feel is best for the kids! You two rely on each other. You will need to be on the same page when bigger issues arise, so don’t consistently break down the already delicate relationship by knit picking your ex’s parenting skills at every turn.
So to recap, post divorce tip number 8, don’t sweat the small stuff when it concerns your ex and his/her dealing with your kids. Save your criticisms and questions for bigger, more complex issues…I promise they will rear their ugly heads soon enough. The teenage years are coming.
Ciao for now!