Some Maryland couples who are going through a divorce might struggle to treat each other civilly. However, giving into momentary rants to or about an ex can have a significant negative impact on the outcome of the divorce, including the settlements and even custody arrangements.

What the court perceives

Speaking negatively to and about an ex during a divorce might be used as evidence to support an ex’s claim that this behavior was ongoing. Courts do not know the intimate details and day-to-day relationship between spouses seeking to end a marriage, so recorded phone calls, texts or even social media posts that are aggressive toward an ex can paint an inaccurate picture for the court.

Work is not the appropriate place to fight over divorce issues

Further consequences can arise from losing patience and publicly attacking an ex. For example, calling or visiting an ex’s job to argue about the breakup can negatively impact that ex’s professional reputation, which can then result in that ex losing income and opportunities. This, in turn, might lead to a lesser divorce settlement.

The best interest of the child should always come first

This type of behavior can also affect custody arrangements for divorcing couples. If a court sees that one parent is communicating in an aggressive and negative manner or speaking badly about the other parent in front of the children, the court might give that parent less custody time and less responsibility when it comes to decision-making about the children. Professionals suggest three ways to work toward a friendlier divorce:

• Be patient during the process.
• Be aware when you talk, text or write about your ex.
• Be mindful about what you say in front of the children.

An attorney may remind their client that keeping the divorce process as amicable as possible may yield much better results than having constant conflict with an ex. Making the effort to be respectful and civil is typically worth the more positive outcome.