Ex-Etiquette: Dealing with an Ex at Your Child’s Events

What Do I Do When my Ex Brings The New Partner Along?

If you are recently separated or are going through a divorce, you are probably dealing with some heavy emotions. Meanwhile, you child’s sporting and school events still carry on, and you are forced to be around your ex in support of your child. This is not an uncommon occurrence during transitional times, but it may feel like it at first. The task can be even harder to cope with if your ex brings along their latest love interest. If you are struggling with knowing what to do in these situations, read on for tips on etiquette and ways to deal with your feelings until you can release them away from the event.

Etiquette at School and Sporting Events

These 5 tips will help you make it through your child’s event when your ex is present:

  1. Watch your words: Be careful not to make snide comments or be passive aggressive and watch what conversations you get in when other people are around. A comment made under your breath to your friend about your ex’s new girlfriend may fall on the wrong ears and cause a scene in front of your children. If you make snide remarks to your ex or his/her new fling, it casts a negative light on you, not on them.
  2. Think of your ex as a business partner: If you view the relationship as transactional, and in a business-like manner, it may make seeing him or her with someone new a little easier to stomach. The marriage ended for a reason, and you know those reasons, so there is no need to be catty, jealous, or give too much thought to the new relationship unless it is negatively affecting your child.
  3. Do not pay attention to opinions: Everyone has an opinion on the dos and don’t of divorce, but those opinions are coming from a different story than yours. Treat your situation like an island, separate from others. If someone offers you their thoughts on how you should be acting or feeling, kindly remind them that you are not focused on that at this event, and that you are paying attention only to your child.
  4. Resist the urge to pry: Try to remove yourself from social media that will bring you down, and that includes your ex’s pages. If you have the urge to pry into his or her new relationships and to dig up dirt on the new person in their life, you will end up in more pain than joy. You will find what you are looking for—and usually it is negative.
  5. Focus on your child: Whether it is back to school night, a sports event, or a school play, focus on the actions and words of your child. If you feel yourself being distracted, move to a place that you cannot see your ex without turning your head.

Dealing With Emotions During an Event

If you are struggling with controlling your emotions during your child’s event, there are a few things you can do to calm down and resist tears or anger from erupting.

  1. Breathe: Take deep, slow breaths to focus inward and slow your heart rate as well as your mind.
  2. Focus on the items in the room: Orient yourself on things other than the person or people who are the subject of your emotion will help to bring you back to the present event and task.
  3. Take a quick walk outside: Get outside or just away from your ex so that you can relax a bit and regain your composure. Take that time to think of why you are there and to remind yourself that it is not permanent, and you will be away from them soon enough.

Facing a Divorce? Call Us: (270) 977-8910.

If you are separated and are facing a divorce, you’ll need an experienced and compassionate advocate by your side. Count on our team at the Law Office of Pamela C. Bratcher to provide the practiced legal counsel and representation that you need when everything seems to be up in the air. Our divorce attorney has 28 years of experience under her belt, and that is helpful when it is all new to you.

Contact our firm today at (270) 977-8910.