When you decide to get a divorce, you often forget that sometime in the future, your ex will be dating again and that your children may have a step-parent in their lives. In a perfect world, you and that person will get along and may even become friends for your children’s sake. Unfortunately, we don’t live in a perfect world.
Few things in our lives make us happier than our children. We always want to be one of the most important people in their lives and when our ex starts to date is often when the realization sets in that someone strange may become important, too. This is hard enough to handle, but if this person is someone you don’t like, it can be even harder.
If you don’t like your ex’s new friend, you will need to stop and think about why you have these feelings. Is it simply that you don’t want your ex to be happy or for your children to have a new person in their lives? Are you jealous because you haven’t found a special someone, yet? Or are you getting strange feelings from this person?
Listen carefully to your children. They will often let more slip than they mean to when they are talking about someone. If your child says they don’t like the new friend, you need to ask why, but keep in mind your child may be saying he/she doesn’t like the friend so your feelings don’t get hurt.
Unless you have concrete proof that the new friend is hurting your child or is a bad influence in some way (drugs, alcohol or disrespectful) there is little you can do to keep your children away from him/her. You can try talking to your ex about your misgivings, but realize that you will probably just come off as jealous and little attention may be paid to you.
If there truly is a reason your children should not be around your ex’s friend, then you need to discuss the issue with your ex. If he/she is unwilling to listen to your concerns, you may need to contact your attorney for further information. You will need proof of wrong-doing, not just your dislike before much can be done.
Remember – your children are your number one concern. Just because you are jealous of their new relationship is not a reason to try to destroy it. If your child happily talks about their new friend, you will have to learn to accept the relationship. No, it may not be easy, but you don’t want to damage your own relationship with your children because of that jealousy.
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