The Good Divorce

Is it possible to end a marriage and stay amicable with your ex? Absolutely!

Nobody goes into any serious relationship expecting it to end, and yet sadly, the statistics shed some harsh light on the stark reality: almost half of all marriages end in divorce.

Yet despite the unavoidable heartache and stress of a break-up, if kids are involved, it’s worth doing whatever it takes to remain on good terms with your ex.

Here are three new ‘vows’ to say ‘I do’ to…

STAY CALM & KIND

Ask yourself, what do you really, really want? Revenge? Vindication? Or peace?

Whatever has caused the breakdown of your relationship, and whoever was mainly responsible, that’s not the main issue now. US author Merrit Malloy says, “Relationships that do not end peacefully, do not end at all.” If you want to truly move on, your primary goal should be for everybody (you, your ex, your kids) to get to a place where you are actually at peace with one another.

Make no mistake, this doesn’t have to happen overnight (it rarely will). And there is nothing wrong with feeling the very big and very real emotions that are always part of a huge life change. But through it all, make a vow to stay calm, and kind.

To not react to the situation, but to pause and make measured decisions from a place of composed peace, not deranged pain and anger. In the end – this will help you to heal faster and to find the peace you truly deserve.

Continue to show up like the adult you are and model a healthy mastery of your own emotions – especially when kids are involved.

As one fellow mum and divorcee said, “It is much easier to transition from marriage to divorce when you accept that life changes, your partner is a good person, just not right for you, and hanging on to the anger or grief is counterproductive to your happiness.”

STAY CONNECTED

This point might seem contradictory. After all, isn’t the very purpose of divorce to separate from one’s spouse – not to stay connected?

But then again, if kids are involved, you will always be connected to this person – the other parent of your children. Unless there are reasons to really cut off all contact (if there is any form of abuse or if your ex poses any danger to you or your kids), it’s best to try and keep healthy lines of communication open.

Of course, you don’t have to be best buddies, but being able to properly and honestly talk to one another about all the complexities and admin concerning your kids and family life will really help you both in the long run.

Both parties should commit (perhaps even vow) to keep remembering that when it comes to the kids, you’re both on the same side: not on opposite teams. You both want to see your kids happy, succeeding, and thriving. When one parent sets out to be the ‘winning’ or ‘best’ parent – everybody loses.

Don’t make your kids take sides – help them to see the best in your ex. This will help everyone (especially your kids) to better adjust in the long run too.

PUT THE KIDS FIRST

It may seem obvious, but in the blur and chaos of a divorce, vow to put the welfare of your children first.

Leave your hurts and heartache at the door, don’t try to share them with your kids. Find adult friends and support for that.

Don’t let your kids play you off of your ex either – but try to present a united front to them (when it comes to parenting). Kids of all ages also need to be told, explicitly and repeatedly, that they are never the reason for your divorce.

This may seem fairly obvious to you, but children pick up on unspoken cues and messages and often wrongly interpret these. You really can’t tell them enough how much you love them, how much your love for them will never change (no matter what), and how much the cause of this transition has nothing to do with them.


For more advice on dating again, click HERE.

And if you’re a single mom looking for some solid financial wisdom, check out this 2-part podcast series with financial journo and fellow single mom, Angelique Arde HERE.

Mums if you have been through a divorce are you and your ex on good terms?

Comment below to let us know x

30 thoughts on “The Good Divorce

  1. Aloysia says:

    Thanks Mumbox for this article, it actually came at the right time. I am currently in the process of a divorce and sometimes it just seems so hard and unfair. I am going through so many emotions right now and it’s taking everything in me to hang in there. My ex was my first and only boyfriend and then we got married and had 3 kids. Having never even been through a break up before, I just felt like I wish I knew exactly what to do, how to behave etc and this article has definitely helped me in more ways than you know. Thank you so much.

    • Rejoice Muza says:

      Exquisite article! Feels like it’s meant for me. My divorce was very bad…2 years after I divorced my ex husband raped me and I reported it obviously. Now, years down the line, my daughter loves her daddy so much that she wants to go to him every Friday after school and come back on Monday.

      I decided that I have to put our grievances aside as it seems we will be communicating every week. Even though he doesn’t help me with fees or anything I told myself that my kids can not suffer because of our grievances.

      Thank you for this article, it helps a lot.

  2. DESIREE says:

    Thank you for the information which is very helpful.. I am in a similar situation and it really weighs heavy on kids. After reading the article I contacted my ex to try and put our differences aside and show a united front. It really works and I have seen my kids graded improving. Please keep on sending the articles. We are sometimes enveloped in such matters that an article such as this one is a light in a dark space. Thank you.

  3. Melissa says:

    Today there are many more tools/ reading material to assist families through divorce. As a person who has experience parents getting divorced 30 years ago. I wish these kinds of articles were around then, especially to help parent navigate their way through such a difficult time. Thank you mumbox for the article. It is needed especially for people going through difficult times such as divorce.

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