How To Communicate With An Ex – There are lots of reasons why two separated partners might have to remain in communication with each other following a breakup. From guardianship of children to work proximity to unresolved business, the reasons why someone might have to communicate with an ex are varied, but one thing is not communicating with an ex can be hard and emotionally complex, especially if the breakup was hurtful or not mutual. Going into these conversations with a little bit of outside guidance from the expert team at Horizon Plymouth can help you to better understand your own complicated emotions to facilitate and take part in much more productive (and less emotionally exhausting) conversations. The team at Horizon Plymouth has a few tips to keep in mind during these situations that can help your communication run much more smoothly.
How To Communicate With An Ex
To start, it can be helpful to explore the root of your own emotions, as labelling them can help you to understand more deeply how you are truly feeling and how those feelings can impact future communications. Although these explorations are possible on your own, it can often be beneficial to enlist the help of a qualified counsellor, such as one of the therapists at Horizon Plymouth, to offer an experienced, outside perspective. Additional tips include:
- Establish and respect boundaries: You know what you need to heal, and what you are willing to tolerate from the other person. Clearly communicate your boundaries, and respect those that are communicated to you. Giving everyone the space and distance that they need can help limit emotional involvement and keep interactions civil.
- Create space: Once you are broken up, neither party owes the other the emotional support that comes with a relationship. Although it’s possible to remain friends after a split, relying on your ex for emotional support typically only complicates matters and creates internal confusion, murky boundaries, and emotional exhaustion on both sides.
- Respond appropriately: While it is easier said than done, keeping interactions surface-level and civil is the best way to keep hurtful things out of a conversation. Passive aggressive comments, hurtful jabs, and pointless bickering only continue to sour the relationship even further. Likely both parties have been hurt by the termination of the relationship and remembering that your ex is likely feeling complicated emotions as well can help you to keep the insults inside—as difficult as it may be.
It is also important to keep in mind that sometimes peaceful and productive communication is not possible. If emotions are too intense, or there is a history of trauma or abuse, the best thing to do might be to enlist the help of an unbiased third party or a mediator. Although productive communication with someone who hurt you is the goal in many situations, occasionally setting a no-communication boundary is truly what’s best for your own mental health, so take the time to explore your options with your Horizon Plymouth counsellor if you are concerned.
Speaking with an ex-partner for any reason is an incredibly challenging task. Your shared history combined with the raw, negative emotions common after a separation can make civil conversation difficult. Keeping this complicated emotional turmoil out of conversation is an incredibly difficult task—and one you don’t have to do alone. The experts at Horizon Plymouth can help you work through your lingering feelings of hurt, regret, resentment and more, in order to be able to heal and communicate in a much healthier manner. If you are concerned about communicating with an ex or have already experienced challenges following a breakup, reach out to Horizon Plymouth to schedule your initial consultation today!