Quarantined with Your Ex: How do You Cope When You Live with Someone You Despise?

Many people who go through divorces well think that if only their spouse and themselves could have some time together to talk through their issues, a reconciliation would be possible. We all get caught up in our day-to-day activities; yeah, it seems like we are busier now more than ever. These activities may not even be all that important, and we may tend to lose focus on our relationships to engage in activities that are not all that important in the long run. Even our marriage relationship is one that we can Take for granted during specific periods.

I have figured out when it comes to Texas divorce cases that you may, as a person who was considering divorce, consider your spouse to be an ex-spouse even if you have not gone through a divorce as of yet. There is a certain amount of emotion That plays into when you feel like your marriage is over. While your wedding may very much still be legal and valid, it may be the case that you have emotionally finished the marriage.

Let’s assume that you were going through a divorce in the early spring when the COVID-19 pandemic came across our area. To one extent or another, our lives as we knew them came to a halt during this period. It does not matter if we were going through a divorce; most of the family law courts in Southeast Texas closed for periods and have only since been able to reopen to allow for the regular proceeding of legal matters.

In the meantime, what can you do to ensure that, If you are living with a spouse you are not on the best terms, you can Make it out of this time with your sanity intact? That is a reasonable question to ask and one that I would like to offer my thoughts on today in this blog post. While your particular circumstances will be unique to you and your spouse, I think I have some general advice that can benefit you.

Set your boundaries and do not back off

When it comes to relationships of any kind, it is a good idea to always establish proper boundaries early on if at all possible. The quintessential limitation that is important to create between spouses is what you can and cannot say to that person That will push their buttons. Ideally, you and your spouse will discuss a wide range of topics and be comfortable sharing her thoughts and feelings. However, if you find yourself in a circumstance where you disagree with one another in big and small matters, you may want to talk through those issues directly with your spouse.

Lucky for both of you, the pandemic and subsequent quarantines mean that you have more time now than ever before to work on establishing boundaries both for the short term and long term. Often, if we attempt to salvage a relationship, we will back down on our limits and allow that other person to say things that we are not necessarily comfortable with. You may authorize a spouse to be overly critical of you in some regards to show them that you are willing to hear there are criticisms and take appropriate action. While this may allow you to listen to their genuine concerns, it can also cause you to harm emotionally.

You should be clear with your spouse About what you believe to be an appropriate conversation about the marital problems that you are having. It is vital for you and your spouse to share issues and be able to respond appropriately to constructive criticism. If you allow your spouse to speak to you honestly but do not allow him to say things to you that are hurtful and over the line, then you have a better chance at reaching a reconciliation point with him.

The other side of the coin is that if you do not establish boundaries with your spouse, it is unlikely that you ever will. Every married person, even those in functional marriages, knows that there are specific topics and certain words that can be incredibly hurtful to a spouse. If you were to utter those words during an argument, it would cause your spouse a great deal of pain. Word would set them off and take the fight to a new level of anger and hostility. Most spouses want to avoid saying these words or encroaching on this subject matter.

As a result, you probably should have established boundaries early in the marriage that would dictate what subject matter was appropriate to discuss and what was out of bounds during an argument. If you and your spouse are the types that engage in nonproductive in a vicious verbal fight, then this will be a brilliant time for you all to set up some appropriate boundaries. If not now, you will probably never find a better opportunity to do so. Even if you do not specifically walk through the issues that are giving your marriage the most problems, you can at least set up the groundwork to do so at a later date by establishing boundaries.

Plan for your future and do not dwell in the present.

Suppose you believe that a divorce from your spouse is unavoidable, and that is the direction you will choose no matter what results from this quarantine. In that case, Talking things through with your spouse during this time probably will not make much of a difference to your mindset. Sometimes in life, if you are anything like me, all the additional conversation and advice in the world could not get you to change from a position you are talking about a specific subject. With that in mind, if you believe that a divorce from your spouse is necessary and in your best interests, no degree of talking or counseling during this quarantine will likely cause you to change your mind.

Finding yourself in this position means that you are much more likely to find happiness and contentment in the future rather than in the present. I would recommend that you embrace this reality and focus on your future rather than dwelling in the present discomfort of living with a spouse with whom you do not see a lot. Instead of focusing on a life that may feel trapped in neutral, or worse- in reverse, you should begin to plan for and contemplate what life could be like once your divorce is complete.

What steps are you taking to prepare for your divorce from a logistical perspective? By this, I mean, what are you doing to get ready for the actual steps of your divorce? Have you begun To interview family law attorneys who can represent you in the divorce? Do you know what qualities you are looking for in an attorney or what experience levels you would like to enter before? What about your goals in a family law case?

Have you started to consider what you want to accomplish in your divorce? Every person who goes through a divorce will find themselves in a unique circumstance. However, there are two components to every divorce—the first deals with child custody, in the second deals with property division. It would be best if you began to focus on these two areas and think about your ideal circumstances and what you will do to ensure that you meet these goals.

Thinking about these long-term subjects will accomplish two things. First of all, It will remove you from the toxic or at least unpleasant circumstances of your current life and allow you time to consider long-term planning. So much of our time is spent fixated on the present that we have no opportunity to think about the future. By removing your mindset from the everyday struggle of living with a soon-to-be ex-spouse, you can prepare yourself for another phase of your life.

In doing this, you can remove yourself from interacting and possibly engaging in negative conversation with your spouse. You may not be able to control your present circumstances, but as long as you live with your spouse, if you can keep in mind that there are bigger goals in mind than simply making it through a pandemic, you will be better off. Generally speaking, maintaining a positive mindset is best for you, and if you have children is best for your kids as well.

Focus on your kids and not on your spouse

When I hear from people that they are stressed out about work or concerned about the pandemic or any other topic, I always think to myself, if they have kids, are they paying enough attention to them? Children are an exciting topic because we love our kids more than anything else on earth. I can also take them for granted more readily than many other subjects. For example, these tough economic times may have caused you too to be concerned with the future of your job. However, I seriously doubt that you were worried for your children in the same way you were involved with your job.

That doesn’t mean you don’t love your kids or that you love your job more than your kids. Not even close. However, our kids R is such a big concern that they almost transcend the typical situation we have with other areas of our lives, like our marriage and work. I would recommend that you focus on your kids right now and ensure that they’re getting what they need during this pandemic rather than wrapping yourself up in worry over your marital difficulties.

Whatever your concerns are over the pandemic, it is likely that your kids, depending on their age, have problems that are just as valid and even more real. The benefit that you have as an adult is that you have a context for this whole situation. We have a pretty good basis of knowledge that the pandemic, at least to the extent that we have seen thus far, is very unlikely to persist into the extended future. At some point, the situation will get better, and some semblance of normalcy will return to our lives. We may not know when that is, but we, I hope, are reasonably sure that it will return.

On the other hand, your kids likely do not have the same perspective because of their age. You should reach out to your kids right now and be sure that you give them the attention they need. I’m not only talking about the pandemic itself but their interests, relationships, and in their schooling. Whenever this pandemic comes to an end, you will have a stronger relationship with your kids, and you will not have focused all of your energy on negative subjects like an impending divorce.

Questions about the material contained in today’s blog post? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan

If you have any questions about the material contained in today’s blog post, please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan. Our licensed family law attorneys offer free of charge consultation six days a week in person, over the phone, and via video. These consultations are an excellent opportunity for you to ask questions about your circumstances and learn more about our law office. We take a great deal of pride in serving our community and representing clients throughout Southeast Texas’s family courts. Thank you for choosing to spend part of your day with us here on our blog, and we hope you will join us again soon.

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