A husband and wife verbally lash out at each other during the divorce. It’s in text messages, emails, phone calls. They know what they’re doing is foolish. Maybe each spouse also knows what they’re writing will be used against them in court, especially if there are admissions made that become relevant in a custody case. But they can’t help themselves. Rehashing bitter moments during the marriage is too easy. So is blaming the other for the breakup and the problems that have followed since separation. Sound familiar?
The heightened emotions in divorce
If you’ve ever been through a divorce or know someone close to you who has, it should. It’s pretty common. We divorce lawyers see it regularly although our lawyers (the ones in our firm) do a pretty darn good job of educating our clients about both the foolishness and legal consequences that could follow such conduct. Still though, nobody is immune from the melt down.
Understanding the triggers that cause the emotional turmoil
So how do you stop it? I have talked to colleagues, judges, psychologists and many others who have a professional or clinical perspective on this. But the best perspective didn’t come from them. It has come from experience in studying the triggers that cause such verbal attacks. You see, you cannot stop humans from being human, which is to say we will all stay things we regret from time to time but if you study the triggers for such behaviors (what led to them), control is no longer an adolescent illusion.
What are the triggers? I am glad you asked. [Continue reading]