6 tips for attending children’s events with your ex also there

Divorce does not just dissolve a marriage. It also redefines family dynamics, especially with children in the picture.

Attending children’s functions after a divorce can become less fun if the co-parent is also there. Patience and a cooperative mindset can be very helpful.

1. Be civil and respectful

Civility is important. Remember, these events are about the children, not about adult grievances. Avoid your ex-spouse altogether if that helps sidestep a scene. Otherwise, greet your ex politely and engage in small talk if necessary. Stay away from tricky topics and focus on the positive aspects of the event.

2. Coordinate logistics in advance

It may help to coordinate logistics such as transportation, seating arrangements and any necessary supplies well in advance. This prevents last-minute conflicts and ensures a smoother experience for both parents and children.

3. Set boundaries and stick to them

Establish clear boundaries with your co-parent regarding behavior and interactions during children’s functions. Agree on topics to avoid, appropriate ways to communicate and guidelines for handling disagreements. Setting boundaries helps maintain respect and minimizes potential conflicts.

4. Focus on the children

In New York, children make up about 20.3% of the population. Each of these children deserve support. Celebrate your children’s achievements, cheer them on during performances and engage with their friends and teachers positively. Redirecting attention to the children fosters a cooperative atmosphere and reinforces your commitment to their well-being.

5. Maintain a unified front

Avoid contradicting each other or undermining the other parent’s authority. Consistency and solidarity reassure children and provide them with a sense of stability.

6. Take care of yourself

Attending children’s functions can be emotionally challenging when an ex is there. Practice relaxation techniques and seek support from friends or a therapist. After each function, reflect on what went well and what might need improvement. Use these reflections to adapt your approach and make future events even smoother.

These tips can help many ex-spouses attend children’s functions and help their children thrive.