When my divorce was new, talking with my ex was painful.
We were angry at each other, and, let's face it, looking for ways to hurt each other.
As a child of a divorce, I'd always sworn that I'd never put my kids through that -- yet as it turned out, living paycheck to paycheck and trying to do our own growing up while raising a family proved to be too great a strain on our marriage: It bent, cracked, and finally broke.
I flew through the first couple of months after our separation in an adrenaline-powered blur.
Dating after divorce can be fun, but when kids are involved, you have to be a bit more careful ...
Dating after divorce can be exciting, but when you have children it's a risky proposition.
When I was married, we were just like all the other families: our own tiny self-sufficient universe.
Even if my husband and I didn't get along, we were both still deeply invested in the minutiae of running our family.
For a while, it was overwhelming, but we eventually created chaos lite.
No matter what the latest study said about the damaging effects of a broken home, I tried to remember that my boys and I were much more than a statistic -- and that our home wasn't broken.
Hashing out sensitive topics this way allowed me to cool down before responding.
"Sleep before you send," advises New York City family-law specialist Peter Bienstock.
But no matter how right I felt I was, deep down in my heart I knew: Being in constant fight mode was horrible for my kids, and it was making me even more miserable.