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Setting Boundaries After Divorce

Posted By Judy Williams || 18-Nov-2013

After divorce, the need for an ex-spouse to maintain contact with their children remains present. This scenario, when managed correctly, can foster healthy relationships between both former spouses and their children in a manner that respects the authority of both parents while allowing independent relationships to prosper post-divorce.

There are certain scenarios that need to be avoided in order to allow healthy interaction between former spouses. The “Bondage of Caring” and the “Bondage of Bitterness” refer to sentiment retained by an ex-spouse after a split. If one spouse remains emotionally attached and attempts to place themself in the midst of their ex-spouse’s life for emotional support, they exhibit the bondage of caring. The usage of children as a vehicle to cater personal interests needs to be addressed and avoided post-divorce for the sake of both the children and the parents. Alternately, if an ex becomes jealous at the remarriage of their former spouse and utilizes their children as a means to infiltrate their ex’s life and cause difficulty, they invoke the bondage of bitterness. Both of these situations necessitate the usage of clearly defined boundaries and rules in regards to children and the post-divorce relationships of the parents, which can be discussed and outlined during mediation.

In a situation where custody is split evenly between parents, issues may arise relating to different parenting styles. In this scenario it is important to be respectful of the other parent’s views on parenting so long as their practices do not place the children in direct harm or jeopardy.

Maintaining respectful boundaries of each other’s personal lives after a divorce will allow for positive relationships with children and civil interaction between former spouses.

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