A couple who has decided to separate often needs to communicate with each other regarding children or shared property. Even if two adults have no children or do not share any property deeds, it is unlikely that a recently separated couple will not have any reasons to contact each other in the first few weeks following the separation. Unfortunately, couples who are angry, hurt, or under a great deal of stress make poorly thought-out choices when communicating that cause both parties unnecessary trouble. Being aware of a few of the communication mistakes separated couples make will help you avoid future problems.
Rely Solely on Lawyers
Two people going through a divorce or engaged in a custody dispute usually turn to lawyers for legal advice and representation. While your attorney is responsible for giving you legal advice, he or she is not meant to be the communication gatekeeper for you and your former partner. Casual conversations related to your household or children that are not confrontational do not need to be filtered through a lawyer. Refusing to speak with your former partner about simple matters causes unnecessary delays, may cause avoidable arguments, and rarely helps the overall situation. As distasteful as it may seem, you will need to speak directly with your ex about certain things.
Cooperation on some level is required to finalize a divorce or custody agreement. One thing that you should do to expedite things and demonstrate that you are willing to work with your ex is to acknowledge his or her messages instead of ignoring them. Disregarding voicemails, emails, or text messages for no legitimate reason prolongs even the most basic discussions. Worse, ignoring a co-parent could lead to missing important information that pertains to the well-being of your mutual children. It is not necessary that you respond to every message you receive, but it is not a good idea to ignore each message sent by your ex out of anger or spite.
Involve Third Parties
A person who does not want to speak to an ex but knows that ignoring them is a bad idea may make the mistake of involving a third party in their communication. Friends, other relatives, and children should not be used as messengers. Not only does involving other people strip both you and your ex of privacy, it also places children or other family members in an extremely uncomfortable position. Relatives or friends who are trying to remain neutral have a difficult time staying out of your relationship issues if they are being forced to relay messages between you and your former partner.
When in Doubt Ask
Establishing new boundaries after a relationship has ended is never easy. If you are not sure how much communication is acceptable or expected discuss your concerns with a family law attorney. The lawyers at Vayman & Teitelbaum have helped others in your situation navigate their separations and we understand that each case is different. With offices throughout the Atlanta, Georgia area, our team is prepared to answer your questions and help you decide what options are best for you. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation so that we can begin providing the legal advice you need.