Strategies to Deal with the Ex

27 10 2008

1) Stay out of it. Let your husband deal with his ex. It’s his burden to bear. You’re there for support, of course, but he should be the one communicating with her if possible.

2) Smile and nod. Make like you’re at a cocktail party whenever you and Mom have to be in the same room together. Be polite. Keep the conversation light and about the kids.

3) Refuse to engage. If Mom wants to fight with you, don’t go there. If she yells obscenities at you every time you answer the phone, get caller ID and let her leave a message. Then your husband can call her back.

4) Defend yourself with kindness. The best defense against a bio mom on the attack is to repeatedly come at her with kindness. It’s kind of like dealing with road rage. If somebody starts flipping you the bird and honking at you while you’re on the freeway, if you smile, shrug and mouth, “Sorry!” you won’t end up on the side of the road in a fist fight with a stranger, because you’ve defused the situation. If you roll down your window and drop the F-bomb, the story will likely have a different ending.

5) Bury the hatchet. Stepmoms and biological moms really can get along. I promise. I’ve actually met stepmoms who like their husband’s ex. In fact, one stepmother I interviewed for A Career Girl’s Guide to Becoming a Stepmom asked the biological mother of her stepchildren to be the godmother to the child she had with this woman’s ex.

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