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Don't do this if your child wants to live with your ex

You got custody in the divorce, and your child lives with you most of the time. Your ex is still around, though, and the child lives with them every other weekend.

You think it's going well, but then your child says they want to live with your ex far more often. Emotionally, it's quite a blow. It's tough news to hear. As you work through it, talking with your ex and your child to decide if it's time to get the custody arrangement legally changed in court, here are a few things you should not do:

  • Do not get angry. You may feel angry and hurt, and that's understandable. But having an angry argument about it does not help.
  • Do not ignore it. Don't hope that your child will just give up on the idea or forget about it. Communication is key.
  • Do not start badmouthing your ex. Don't insult them in anger or to change your child's mind. Remember that you are both the child's parents, and you always will be.
  • Don't refuse to even bring it up with your ex. It may be hard for you to admit it or bring it up, but they need to be involved too.

The key is to try not to take it personally and try not to think too much about yourself. Instead, focus on what is best for your child. Remember that they may ask for what they want but not what is actually best.

If things do get to the point where a modification becomes necessary, make sure you know what steps to take.

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