Emotions flare in divorce, often leading to explosive interactions between you and your ex. There are likely many simmering frustrations and unfinished arguments from during your marriage that either or both of you desire to rehash.
Unfortunately, communication during divorce can often become heated and unproductive. You and your ex can wind up trapped in a cycle of angry communication that heightens your own state of stress, upsets any minor children in your household and makes the entire process of divorcing more difficult. Letting your emotions run the show is a common but also preventable mistake.
Approaching communication with your ex during and after your divorce in a pragmatic manner will benefit you and your entire family. Unless you have incredibly deep reserves of calm and patience, you might want to agree with your ex to communicate in writing at all times.
Written communication can help you in court
The most obvious benefits to communicating solely through email and text is that there is a digital record of everything you discuss. If there eventually becomes a dispute over who did what or said what, you will be able to point to the records of your text or email communications.
Agreements that you make regarding asset division or parenting via text or email may not stand up in court, but they can influence how the courts handle those important decisions. Showing what you initially agreed on as reasonable can help the courts understand the expectations of both parties in the divorce.
In the event that your ex is volatile, threatening or abusive, written communication reduces the risk of needing to deal with threatening, harassing or otherwise abusive communications. Many people won’t want lasting proof of their bad behavior. If your ex does choose to send you threatening text messages or emails, you will then have documentation of that behavior to provide to the court.
Written communication motivates you both to think before you send
Knowing that written communication serves as a paper trail for your every interaction in a divorce can incentivize you and your ex to be on your best behavior. Instead of squabbling and fighting over minor issues, you are more likely to pragmatically and politely address issues and find resolutions when you know there is an actual record of the things you say.
In situations where you find yourself feeling incredibly emotional, you can always delay sending a response. Waiting a few hours or even until the next morning to address something that has you feeling emotional can help you better moderate the way in which you interact with your ex. Try to be professional and courteous.
Written communication during and after a divorce can benefit the whole family. Eventually, as you develop a co-parenting relationship, you can likely move away from formal, written communications.