There is much talk across the country about the lack of civility. When we are under stress or angry, we often become uncivil. Divorce is a decided stress on each spouse and on the children. Divorce is also a stress on the extended family and friends of the divorcing couple.
When you are angry it’s hard not to lash out. There’s also the constant fear that if you express your anger the child support or alimony check may be delayed. A delayed support check can be devastating for those living paycheck to paycheck.
So what can you do? (1) Don’t immediately answer the call from your spouse, let the message go to voicemail. (2) Don’t immediately return a nasty text (it can be used against you in court). (3) Think about your children. Lashing out at a spouse hurts your children more than it punishes your spouse. (4)Meditate or do yoga. (5) Go for a run or a walk. (6) Tell your troubles to your dog or cat. (7) Call a friend and bitch. (8) Distract yourself by joining a Meet-up group, or read a book, drink a glass of wine (or ice tea), cook a batch of cookies – anything that allows you to cool down. (5) Answer your spouse in your own time and be civil. You will catch more flies with honey than vinegar and your blood pressure won’t boil.
I know this will not work every time but it will work most times. Civility starts with you and in your home. Don’t let a jerk define how you respond to his or her incivility.