Ask a Mediator

My ex keeps stirring up conflict unnecessarily.  I just want peace.  I know it takes “two to tango” but how do I get out of this dance?

While it does take two to tango, it only takes one person to put on the music and drag you onto the dance floor.  Some people, particularly those in major challenges or pain, use fighting as a means for connection.  When all else is falling in around them, conflicts give their lives purpose and gives them a sense of connection.  Often in a divorce, the other partner has moved on and wants to disengage.  That just stirs up the desire for connection.  What to do?

This is a chance to practice the art of letting go.  Not letting go of the person but of what you can’t control.  Choose your battles very carefully.  Most of these conflicts you can let run off your back.  Let go of your desire to be the best parent, to save face, to be right, to get everything “you deserve” from the settlement of assets.  Engage only when you absolutely must to protect your children or yourself from harm.  That doesn’t mean that you have to give in to a tyrant, it just means you will find that peace if you stay quiet and calm and let the moment pass.  Avoid the temptation to be right because it will only feed the “monster” of conflict.