At holiday time, stepcouples often have the “opportunity” to see their ex-spouses. For some this is fine and even pleasant, but for others it triggers strong emotions: sadness, fear, anger, jealousy, resentment and others. Maybe it’s been a long time since you saw your ex or maybe you saw him last week. You may be facing a 10 minute child pickup or a 3 hour celebration meal and gift exchange. The amount of time doesn’t matter. It still pushes buttons for many people!
To those people who are dreading these encounters and need help dealing emotionally: Let’s face it! You have feelings about this person and you don’t know what will happen when you see him. How will she look? Were you really married to him? Will he be sober? What will the new spouse be like? And lastly, can you handle it all?
The answer is YES, you can. You HAVE TO for yourself and for the kids. You can start by drawing a strong boundary between you and your ex. Accept that while it’s uncomfortable, there are ways for you to handle the pressure.