7 ways to diffuse tension, conflict during divorce


When two people are getting divorced, arguments and disputes can arise throughout the legal process. These battles can add to the stress and discomfort parties may already be feeling, so it can be important to work to minimize them.

Various strategies can help parties diffuse the tension and resolve conflict during a divorce.

Possible options can include:

  1. Communicating wisely – If talking to each other typically leads to fights or hurt feelings, it can be a good idea to stop communicating directly unless necessary. If you do need to contact one another, consider keeping your exchanges brief and in writing to prevent tempers from flaring.
  2. Walking away – Stepping away from a heated situation can allow both parties to calm down and compose their thoughts. Taking a break can prevent people from saying or doing something they later regret.
  3. Unfollowing each other on social media – Seeing pictures or posts on an ex’s social media can be very upsetting. As such, it can be a good idea to unfollow each other. Keep in mind, however, that the things you do and say on social media can still get back to each other, so you should also refrain from sharing anything on your social media that you wouldn’t want to share in court.
  4. Seeking healthy outlets – Divorce can take a toll on a person’s physical and mental health. Pursuing healthy outlets like new hobbies, exercising and spending time with loved ones can improve your well-being and outlook. These activities can be especially beneficial for people experiencing stress, anxiety or depression.
  5. Being respectful – You don’t have to be nice to each other or go out of your way to make accommodations, but you can and should be respectful. Doing so can go a long way toward reaching agreements more quickly.
  6. Speaking to a counsellor or therapist – Ending a marriage can trigger complicated emotions and realizations that a person may have never experienced before. Dealing with all this can be overwhelming. As such, talking to a therapist or counsellor can help you better understand yourself, your situation and your needs.
  7. Mediating divorce-related issues – Reaching agreements together through mediation rather than fighting in court can make a divorce more peaceful. It can also reduce opportunities for conflict and make it more likely that both parties will be satisfied with the resolution.
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