How To Coparent Your Children With An Abusive Ex

Co-parenting And Dealing With Abusive Ex Spouses

                It’s an unfortunate truth about custody disputes that one, or sometimes both, parties involved are abusive, non cooperative or vindictive to the other parent in order to get what they want in court or simply exert power over the other person. If you are in the middle of a divorce and child custody case with your ex, or dealing with the aftermath and potential return visits to the court room, there are ways to still maintain your position and combat an abusive ex in court. Most of the time, when someone is trying to manipulate you, especially in a family legal situation, they want to get a response from you that works to their advantage. It’s not uncommon for a mother or father to make up stories of verbal or physical abuse or neglect to make them look bad in front of the judge so they grant them custody instead of the other parent. Here are some strategies to use in a situation like this.

  • Inaccurate Testimonies. Making up a story for the judge about the mother or father is not only immoral but it’s also bad for the child to experience. If they hear that their mother or father is abusive and a whole bunch of negative stories are thrown around, this plants seeds of doubt in a child’s mind. The last thing a parent needs is for their children to lose faith in them. If you’re the target of false accusation or your ex is verbally coercing you into signing things you don’t want to sign or threatening to take the child and go to another state if you don’t give them what they want, timing is key. If you’re a father and you haven’t legally established paternity, get that done. If there’s no proof the child is yours, your ex is more likely to get what they want. If you’re a mother fighting against an abusive ex husband or boyfriend, take the necessary steps to protect yourself such as restraining orders, documentation of past abuse etc.
  • Recurring Issues Later On. With abusive or vindictive ex’s, sometimes going to court one time and getting a court order isn’t going to work, it might require several trips to court; this means more time, more money and more heart ache. If your ex keeps bringing stuff into court, you need to be prepared to back up anything they say about you. Most of the time, the judge will not keep seeing the same case over and over again but it’s also not uncommon for parents to experience issues with their ex for months or even years. To prevent this from happening, get the best custody and parenting plan you can to ensure that problems don’t arise down the line. Getting full legal and physical custody ensures that you have all the decision making power and visitation or any other arrangement is under your discretion.

It can be hurtful to have the mother or father of your child doing things behind your back to deliberately sabotage you and how you get to spend your time with your kids. If you have any feeling that this could happen to you in the future with your ex, it’s a great idea to have solid proof or documentation of past events, financial records or medical records to use in your defense as to why you should get full custody. The goal shouldn’t be to remove one of the parents from the child’s life. The judge will make a decision that’s in the best interest of the child. It’s proven that a child needs both parents in their life for maximize their well being. Knowing this, any judge will be able to see one parent is trying to muscle out the other for the wrong reasons if the evidence is there for them to see.

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Posted in A Childs Best Interests, Child Custody, child custody battles, Child Visitation, Parenting Tips, Raising Children
15 comments on “How To Coparent Your Children With An Abusive Ex
  1. aliciabenton says:

    This is a great article. Unfortunately, I have been in this situation, and thankfully, his manipulation tactics eventually came out in Court, and he was exposed. I hate that there are children who are put in the middle of all this. I documented EVERYTHING, and it turned out to make a huge difference.

  2. sgros4 says:

    Great article, I am a single Mom of a special needs child due to my ex husband abusive ways. Not as much physically as he was emotionally or verbally. Thanks for helping out others who might still be struggling in my former situation.

  3. This is great – I’m passing it on to someone this week.

  4. sgros4 says:

    this article reads like a book of what I have been through over the last two years as I divorced my abusive ex, we have a 16 year old mentally challenged daughter together.
    She often returned from visits claiming verbal and even physical abuse, finally, due to state law where anyone over 12 can decide if they visit the other parent, she just quit going. Today’s her first visit there in over a month. I say nothing against her father, but she formed her own decisions.

    • Be careful. We understand what you just mentioned about this new law. If there is a current court order in place for her father to receive visitation it should be followed, even if your daughter doesn’t want to visit him. If this is her wish, then you should consider going back to court to modify your order. Keep in mind we are not a law firm so this is not legal advice.

  5. […] How To Coparent Your Children With An Abusive Ex ( […]

  6. smommy says:

    This is great advice. I work for a divorce lawyer and it is really sad the situations that parents put their kids in, all in the name of revenge or even just vengeance. I have seen it all and what I learn at work is what I bring home to unsure my own son stays emotionally healthy through my separation and divorce. It is so difficult to hold the tongue, but when you know it could hurt your child, it is imperative. We have adult problems and they are only children that don’t need to be dragged down or into our world like that.

    • Great insight. Thanks for sharing, and you are wise to learn from other people’s negative experiences. There is a divorce attorney who regularly posts on Huffingtonpost’s divorce page who made some very similar statements you just made. Keep up the wise parenting!

  7. […] How To Coparent Your Children With An Abusive Ex ( […]

  8. […] How To Coparent Your Children With An Abusive Ex ( […]

  9. […] How To Coparent Your Children With An Abusive Ex ( […]

  10. Carolina says:

    my ex has won the divorce he is getting full custody of both children. I am walking out of their lives entirely. He does not believe in medical care, has kept me in a room for 6 months I have lost over 45 lbs, spent 3-6 hrs a day interrogating me for the past 6 months, been physically abusive, and I am getting nothing financially from the divorce, I have a medical disability he earns 9k a month and I will have to pay my abuser 300 a month to never see my children again as he plans to take them to his homeland. He does not celebrate holidays or birthdays and my son will never get any more therapy or help and he is severely autistic(I am afraid he will be dead in a year or two my ex does not believe in food allergies and my son has them) and my ex has taken him to faith healers driving over 12 hrs to find one with the right annointing then blamed me for the healing not working b/c I didnt believe.

    • Hello Carolina,

      Thanks so much for reaching out to us for help. The number one thing a judge wants to see is that the decisions you guys are making, as parents, are in the best interests of the child. Keep in mind that we’re not a law firm and can’t give you legal advice. However, it looks like the father isn’t making those kinds of choices in your children’s favor but rather for himself. If you feel that your kids aren’t being properly cared for and you feel that they need to spend more time with you, bringing the issue in front of the judge is an option. Getting a court order protecting your rights to your children ensures that you get to spend the time you need with your kids, they get the proper care and attention they need and that the father can’t take them somewhere else without talking to you first. Please call or e-mail us to talk to one of our representatives about we can start helping you with your family court issue.

      (800) 787-4981

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