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Bartlett Divorce Law Blog

Protect yourself when divorcing a controlling ex

Some adults have a natural need to control the things that go on around them. While this might have been a manageable trait when you were married, it can be downright frustrating when you're divorcing. In some cases, it can become dangerous. You have to protect yourself if you're in this position.

You should try to limit what your ex can control about you. If you have children together, there might be some aspects that you can't change. For example, your ex would still need a way to contact you in case something happens with the kids. You might opt to use a third-party contact or a monitored form of communication for these instances.

Child custody: Children can suffer if a parent is narcissistic

Child custody cases are challenging even under the best of circumstances, but when a narcissistic parent is involved, things get even more difficult. The emotional abuse the children have to endure might not be noticeable to the general public or those who are in contact with them because the narcissist will go to great lengths to ensure they appear kind and loving in public.

Behind closed doors, the narcissist may lash out at the children. They are also likely to alienate the other parent from the children. They don't want anything to come between them and what they want. Because they have an altered sense of reality, they believe they are superior to the child's other parent and will try to use manipulative methods to get their way in court.

Think about summer visits with the kids now

Living in a different geographical area from your children is difficult, but you'll likely look forward to the time that you do get to spend in person with them. Now that the summer is almost here, it's time to start thinking about the upcoming visit with them.

One of the most important things you can do right now is contact your ex to find out what types of things your child enjoys now. You may have some ideas, but this conversation can also include things like special bedtime routines for younger children or specific struggles the older children are having. Your goal is to try to make it easier for your children to adjust to life at your home for the summer.

Know when to seek a child custody modification

When you set up a parenting plan, you set it according to what the child needs then. Those needs might change as your child grows up. Requesting a child custody modification may be necessary if you need to have new terms for the agreement.

There are specific criteria that must be met before you can turn to the court for a modification. You can't just randomly petition the court to change the order just because you don't like it. It's imperative that you understand some of the basics associated with modifications.

Emotional and practical tolls during divorce need to be balanced

Major life changes come with a divorce, so it's imperative that you prepare for these when you know that a split is coming. Some of the changes that come when a marriage ends are for practical reasons, such as one person moving out of the marital home. This can be a costly endeavor because you may have to rent a place, which means paying deposits and related costs. You also need to think about paying for the utilities to be connected.

There are some other factors that you must think about when you're going through this situation. One of these is the emotional toll that comes with a split of this magnitude. More than likely, you and your spouse had a strong bond at one point. It can deteriorate over time, but the reality of it being completely gone might hit you harder than what you think it should.

Decisions in parenting relationships must be based on the child

Working with your ex over child custody matters can be complicated. Each adult likely thinks they know what's best for the children, but these ideas sometimes don't work together. It's imperative that you try to make the parenting relationship as conflict-free as possible so that you can focus on raising children who can thrive.

This doesn't mean that things will always be easy or peaceful. There are times when you'll need to figure out how to handle situations with your ex. Taking the time to consider the options as they stand now and focusing on the current needs of the children may help.

Retirement account value matters in property division

There are many different types of assets that you have to split up when you're going through a divorce. Making sure that you understand some important points about this may help you to make decisions as you go through the process. One particular type of asset that must be split is retirement accounts.

Many people make the mistake of trying to split these accounts based on their current balances. This might not be the most appropriate option that you have when it's time to work through this. You need to look at the value of the accounts. This can be very different from the current balance.

Virtual visitations can help parents spend time with their kids

Parents who don't live within reasonable driving distance of their children often work to find ways to spend time with them. One option that they have is virtual visitation, which involves using technology to do things with the kids even when they can't be there in person. These visits can be built into the parenting plan so that the parent can rest assured they will get the time with their children.

When you're coming up with the terms of the parenting plan, be sure to think about how you can make virtual visits work for your child. One thing that might help is to outline what type of visits you'll get. This might include using instant messaging, video chats, text messages and other similar options. Be sure to consider the child's age and maturity level when you're setting these terms.

Focus on solutions, not blaming, in custody issues

The last thing most people want to do is have to communicate with an ex. However, adults who share children together will usually have to do just that. This isn't always an easy situation but it is the only way that you can effectively co-parent.

One thing that might help you to overcome the difficulties in communication is to agree that you're going to focus only on the children. This understanding might forestall any mentions of what happened during the marriage or divorce, which could help to alleviate some of the stress that might come up.

4 points to remember if infidelity leads to divorce

Learning that your spouse betrayed your marriage can cause a deep pain that isn't always easy to overcome. It might be the factor that leads to the end of your marriage. If this happens, there are several things that you need to think about as you go through the process.

First, you need to allow yourself to heal. This doesn't mean that you condone what your ex did. Instead, it means that you aren't going to let their infidelity rule your life for another day. They made their choice and it is affecting you, but you do have a say in how much you allow it to impact your life.

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