Q1) How can we ex mates give our kids and
ourselves the best chance for
long-term harmony and healing?
By choosing a long-range outlook (e.g. 25-30 years) and helping each other learn and apply
to your unique situation. Do this is to guard your
vulnerable descendents against inheriting the lethal [wounds + unawareness]
probably promoted your conflicts and divorce.
and discuss this overview of the silent [wounds + unawareness]
cycle with your descendents in
each of you for psychological
and commit to personal recovery as needed;
take each of these
see what you need to learn.
evaluate your relationship for any of these
and commit to reducing them together for all your sakes.
help each other improve your communication
Evolve an effective strategy to spot and resolve these three related
yourselves for incomplete grief, and finish
it as needed. Help your family adults evolve a
if you may be in - or are already in - a
protect all of you from re/divorce by using the knowledge and tools in
If either of you exes is
ruled by protective
you'll probably ignore, discount, or sabotage this advice (Yes, but..."),
despite escalating family conflicts.
My ex and I have
major disagreements over parenting issues, and we can't seem to find a middle ground. Can we
Work at each step in Q1, emphasizing
progress on Lessons 1 and 2. As
you do, learn to analyze and
disagreement, including these three stressors and these
Your kids need you to do this as mutually-respectful
My ex often
hangs up on
me when I try to discuss divorce or parenting issues. Can I do anything about this?
Yes. Repeated phone hang-ups usually mean your ex...
doesn't feel heard or respected, and/or...
needs to avoid expected arguing and
feels forced to face
something that causes
Follow the steps in
Q1 above, and...
read and apply
ask your ex to
study. discuss, and try
with you instead of arguing or avoiding;
and are not responsible for doing so. Be alert for
as part of the pain.
My ex harasses me
despite my protests and demands. What can I do?
Follow the steps in Q1 above. If they don't
meet enough of
your ex often enough,
adopt a long-range view - e.g. the next 25
read about lose-lose
legal battles, and...
consult a licensed family-law attorney to learn your legal
rights and options.
I urge you to
use legal force as a
you feel someone is in significant danger now.
My ex is intentionally
biasing our kids against me, and vehemently denies it
and/or blames me for it. What can I do?
mother or father acts intentionally or unconsciously to persuade
their child/ren to dislike, disrespect, distrust, and/or reject their other bioparent,
that may be a symptom of
thus brief YouTube video,
this article, and
for perspective and solution-options.
My ex ignores our
kids despite my requests and protests. What can I do?
First, consider what may be causing that behavior rather than
criticizing. When a custodial or non-custodial bioparent "ignores" a minor child, one or
more of these may be the cause:
abandonment and neglect (trauma), the parent is significantly
and doesn't want to know this or what to
got so little effective
as a young child - specially from the same-gender parent - that s/he
literally does not know how to care for their child/ren and
is embarrassed to reveal that; and/or...
Wounds and ignorance
prevent the "disinterested"
(accepting) major losses from
their separation or divorce,
and s/he can't endure the
of contact with their
child/ren. This is specially likely if the custodial parent is
has a new partner who is step-parenting the bioparent's
The bioparent didn't really
want to conceive or parent one or more kids, and is avoiding the
overwhelming guilt and shame from relating to an unwanted child; and/or...
Contact with their child is
associated with (a) unbearable frustration and conflict with, and/ or (b) longing for the
custodial parent, which overcomes the absent parent's need for contact with their
Accusing such a mother or father of being
self-centered, a terrible parent, or similar is a
tragic mislabeling of these unseen primary problems. The "ignored" child/ren can't
understand this, and feel abandoned, hurt, sad, and shamed anyway.
Commit to working
patiently at the steps in Q1 above.
the "uncaring" bioparent as swathed in bloody bandages walking
with two canes, and shift blame or contempt for her or him to compassion - without sacrificing your needs,
limits, values, or
integrity. If you "can't do that,"
yourself for significant psychological
and take appropriate
if you are doing something that contributes
to the other parent's "indifference" (pain-avoidance). (Option
- ask!). If so, assess what
prevents you (if anything) from changing your attitude and/or behavior;
get clear on what you can
and cannot change, and
of expecting things
this troubled parent cannot provide without hitting
follow your true
Self's wisdom about how and when to explain the ex's behavior to each
affected child. Don't be misled by a child saying their other parent's
disinterest "doesn't bother me." Kids' "indifference" to parental
disinterest (abandonment and neglect) is often protective emotional denial and/or
I believe my ex
spouse has significant
psychological problems, which stress all of us. What are my options?
psychological problems" are usually symptoms of psychological
and your ex doesn't have "mental problems,"
(wounds), or s/he is ruled by
false selves and doesn't (want to) know it or what to
Work at the steps in
(re)read the intro to
Wounded Children and what being a GWC
If your ex has significant wounds, accept
that s/he didn't cause them, and can't change them or the
behaviors they cause until s/he hits
and may decide to
Use the wisdom from these ageless
and enforcing your
with her or him respectfully, and avoid disparaging your ex to your kids
My ex has a major
addiction which affects us all. S/He
vehemently denies this. What can I do?
Premise - all addictions are symptoms of (a)
family dysfunction and
(b) unseen protective
trying to medicate (numb,
distract from) intolerable
This is why
true addicts cannot
permanently change their behavior in response to "logic," pleading, threats,
blame, "reasoning," punishments, manipulations, hints, or accusations.
this article for perspective, options, and
My ex often ignores our legal parenting agreement, and makes excuses, denies this, and/or
blames me and/or other people. Do I have options other than legal
is a surface
problem. Consider these options before calling an attorney, unless you judge someone's health or
safety to be at immediate risk:
Follow the steps in
this article, and
discuss as appropriate.
review whether the
parenting agreement was really a joint agreement, or your ex mate feels
that it was imposed
by someone. Do
you feel s/he was clear on what s/he wanted, and asserted honestly for it? If
not, your ex's "violations" may be a way of expressing
resentment and frustration that the agreement doesn't really represent what
(or some other grievance).
adopt a long-range view
(e.g. 15 to 25 years),
review and validate your respective personal
work to discern
would help your ex feel safe to assert and negotiate fairly, and...
parenting agreement within your own limits and
the possibility that your ex's behavior may be caused by (a) a
(c) some relationship
If so, focus on resolving them vs. haggling over the parenting agreement.
this for options.
mutual-respect attitude, and ask your ex whether
anything that motivates her or him to violate the agreement or order. Then
Doing this does not mean you agree.
with your ex about the parenting agreement (or other conflicts) to see if that illuminates
ways to improve your problem-solving
to see whether you two see clearly
(a) what you
each need relative to
the parenting agreement, and (b) who's really
for filling each
need. If you disagree on this, you have a
Evaluate the pros and cons of using an
informed mediator or
if they can help reduce your conflicts.
If no viable solution
appears from these options, (a) check to see if your
(b) evaluate your long-term
this article before hiring a family-law attorney to
force your ex to comply with the parenting agreement.
My ex threatens to withhold visitation if I choose to date a new partner (or
do something else). I'm really torn! What can I do?
Threats are a sure sign of significant early-childhood psychological
wounding and/or incomplete grief. Commit to doing the steps in
Q1. For your kids' sakes,
inform your ex of what you're doing and why, and invite her or him to join
you in this work. Option
- read and discuss this article
with your ex and other affected relatives.
I suspect that my ex is
abusing our child/ren, but s/he denies it. What are my
Abuse is an inflammatory concept and word
- aggression and/or
may be more accurate terms. People who don't know the
three requisites for true
accuse someone of it and increase
local conflict. Would you rather be publicly called
abusive or aggressive (or neither)?
Invest time and energy in following the steps in
read this. Then see if you feel the same way. If you do...
increase your understanding by searching the Web for
document and accumulate as much factual information (dates, times, specific incidents) about your ex's
abusive behavior as you can; and...
ask your local mental-health
agency, family-law attorney, and/or police for guidance on your responsibilities and options.
Unless immediate intervention is required for a child's
safety, these authorities will usually refer you to your state's Department of Child and
Family Services (DCFS), Child Protective Services (CPS), or equivalent. They'll
usually interview you, assign a case number
and case worker, and initiate a formal investigation. You may or may not remain
if a professional -
including your doctor, pharmacist, therapist, life-coach, child's teacher, and minister -
suspects that a child may be
an abuse victim, s/he's legally required to report that to appropriate
authorities whether you OK that or not.
If you're unsure whether a child is being abused, get as much specific
information as you can, and act anyway - specially if the abuse may
include sexual molestation.
Premise - any
aggression, abuse, and/or neglect with kids or adults (including self-
or abuse) implies the person is
Note: significantly-wounded people tend to unconsciously choose each other as partners
over, until in true recovery -
are you significantly wounded too? See
Reflect: why did you read this - did you get what you needed? If
you need? Who's
these questions - your wise resident true Self