Guest Author - Caroline Henrich
Over our lifetime, it is inevitable there will be disappointments. It is important to recognize that and be prepared to accept disappointments and move forward. Sometimes we disappoint ourselves, other times people disappoint us.
Not all divorces are bitter and filled with years of anger and revenge. Sometimes ex-spouses can get along, especially if they work together for the benefit of children. This however does not mean the relationship is always smooth. There will be times there are disappointments that may cause you to say "I knew he or she would do this - it is typical and why I divorced him or her". While this may make you feel better in the short term, it is not productive in the long term.
Many tines these disappointments involve children. Perhaps the children were not ready at the appointed pick- up time or they were not at the pick-up location. Perhaps your ex-spouse promised to take them on a special weekend and then canceled at the last minute with no explanation.
There could also be an occasion where your ex-spouse speaks negatively about you to your children. Many times he or she many not even have the facts correct.
Should you lash out? Should you tell your kids exactly what you think of your ex-spouse? Should you call your lawyer and immediately go back into court?
There is no easy answer. The first thing you should probably do is to take a deep breath. You do not want to say or do anything when you are in a highly emotional state. You want to be in a calm state, thinking through all of your options.
It may help to sit down and write your thoughts when you are angry, hurt and emotional. Make sure however, you tear up that piece of paper once you are done. It will make you feel better to write your thoughts, however it is probably not something you want anyone else to see.
Once you are calm, you might want to think about writing an unemotional factual note to your ex-spouse. You may also want to have your children speak with their parent, if they are old enough.
If this is serious, you may want to contact your attorney and seek his/her advice. This is not an emotional act of revenge, but one to try to resolve an issue.
The key is remaining calm, thoughtful and unemotional. Do not put your ex-spouse down to your children. Remember that he/she is still the parent and the children love the parent. This is true even if the children are disappointed.
If you need help, rely on your friends or a professional.