Skip to main content

Should you Give your Ex-Wife a Mother's Day Card?

UPDATE: There is at least one company now offering greeting cards designed specifically for ex's: https://xcardsgreetings.com/  If you don't live in the NY/NJ area you may have to order online, but if you plan ahead you could really make an impression on your ex.

Original Post:

I stopped at the grocery store yesterday to pick up a few items.  Since this weekend we celebrate Mother's day I made the obligatory trip down the greeting card aisle.  Of course, the seasonal section was a sea of pastel colored cards ranging from religious to sappy to funny (or appropriately politically correct kinda-funny).  There were cards separated into sections "For My Wife", "From Daughter", "From Son", for grandmothers and even great-grandmothers.


But there weren't any cards in the aisle labeled "For My Ex-Wife."

Why not?

One Judge in Plymouth County has a standard speech he gives divorcing spouses right before he approves their final divorce.  Judge James Menno tells divorcing spouses who are also parents: "Today I divorce you as husband and wife, but you will never be divorced as parents."  Divorced parents are still Mom and Dad, and nothing changes that.

In many cases (maybe even most cases), divorce involves a breakdown in trust between the two parties.  Co-parenting with someone with whom you don't have a trusting relationship can range from difficult to impossible.  In Collaborative Divorce and Mediation, we often focus on the ways in which couples can build communication and enough trust to co-parent effectively after their divorce is final.

One of the most powerful skills that couples can work on to build trust and cooperation is acknowledgement.

We've all heard the complaints that separated parents have about the other parent.  Parenting together is difficult enough, and parenting apart is bound to lead to even more misunderstandings.  But how often do you hear separated parents praise each other's efforts.  How different would conversations between exes be if they began with an acknowledgement of what the other parent is doing well, instead of starting in on what's wrong.  When you acknowledge someone else's strengths they are more likely to be understanding when you have disagreements, because they can trust you to see both the good and the bad.

Even in difficult cases most people will still admit that the opposing party is a good parent.  However, the absence of a Mother's Day card category "For My Ex-Wife" suggests that very few ex-husbands make a point of telling their ex-wife that they're a good mother, even on the day that is specifically designed for that.

So while we wait for greeting card companies to figure this out, buy your ex-wife some flowers or a brunch or a generic Mother's Day card.  Even a cliched Mother's Day gift will make a big impression because even though you're not married anymore she is still a Mom, and that deserves recognition.


Comments

  1. Even when you are married to someone eles who is also a mother to your other son? My husband texted praises to his ex for being an amazing mom and all he did for me was say HMD and give me flowers.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

What is the purpose of the Divorce Nisi waiting period?

In Massachusetts the statutory waiting period after a Judgment of Divorce and before the divorce becomes final (or absolute) is called the Nisi period. After a divorce case settles or goes to trial, a Judgment of Divorce Nisi will issue and it will become Absolute after a further ninety (90) days. This waiting period serves the purpose of allowing parties to change their mind before the divorce becomes final. If the Judgment of Divorce Nisi has issued but not become final yet, and you and your spouse decide you don't want to get divorced, then you can file a Motion to Dismiss and the Judgment will be undone. Although many of my clients who are getting divorced think the idea of getting back together with their ex sounds crazy, I have had cases where this happened. In addition to offering a grace period to change your mind, the Nisi period has three other legal effects: 1. The most obvious effect of the waiting period is that you cannot remarry during the Nisi period, be

New Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines (2021): Big Changes, Little Changes, Typos & some Unexpected Results

UPDATE: The court has released a web calculating version of the 2021 MA Child Support Guidelines Worksheet .  It resolves some of the typos referred to below, but the unexpected calculations still apply. Every four years, per federal mandate, the Massachusetts Probate & Family Court revisits the Child Support Guidelines through the work of a Task Force appointed by the Chief Justice.  The 2021 Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines were recently posted.  They take effect on October 4, 2021.    If you are interested in a training on all of these changes to the new Child Support Guidelines: DMTA Presents the 2021 MA Child Support Guidelines Update  – Attend this event to learn the key updates you need to know for your mediation clients. Presented by Justin Kelsey of  Divorce Mediation Training Associates  and  Skylark Law & Mediation, PC . For a full comparison of all the  tracked changes between the 2018 and 2021 Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines you can download a pdf sho

Does a Criminal Record affect Child Custody?

If one of the parents in a custody case has a criminal record, the types of crimes on their record could have an effect on their chances of obtaining custody. In custody cases the issue is always going to come down to whether or not the best interests of the child might be affected. In the most extreme case, in which one parent has been convicted of first degree murder of the other parent, the law specifically prohibits visitation with the children until they are of a suitable age to assent. Similarly, but to a less serious degree, in making custody and visitation determinations the court will consider crimes that would cause one to question the fitness of a parent. These types of crimes would obviously include any violent crime convictions which could call into question whether the children would be in danger around a parent who has shown themselves to resort to violence when faced with conflict. In addition, drug and alcohol abuse offenses would call into question a parent&#