“You two are the most amazing, separated couple I’ve ever seen"

And trust me, I see lots of them!"

This is what a kinder teacher told me a week ago, when I came to pick up my daughter. It was good to hear it, but what I felt wasn’t pride. It was gratefulness. I felt so grateful because I know just how close we came to not making it.

Here are three major pitfalls that contribute to a messy communication:

1. Ego – When my fragile ego is hurt, everything becomes personal, Suddenly, every single argument or word becomes a fight or flight situation. I used to get defensive, shut down and couldn’t hold an adult conversation.

2. Feelings – When my feelings control me, I’m no longer making rational decisions. I’m easy to be swayed by fluctuating emotions. I feel “easy on the trigger” looking to hurt the other person because “they hurt me” first.

3. Not listening - Communication breakdown happens when I’m not able to hold space, can’t listen to the other person, show empathy. I’m feeling an “antsy charge” in my body when I wait to speak instead of listening.

Was I lucky? Maybe.

Are my ex-partner and I a couple of unique magic unicorns? Unlikely.

Was I working with a mentor, coach, psychologist, equine therapist and attending men circles every week? You betcha!

I was taught about awareness, vulnerability, taking responsibility for my emotions, thoughts, and actions. I was shown the power of men who step out of victim mode, put their ego aside, listen and connect to their truth.

It all comes down to what’s on the line.

Is my future and my kid future something worth changing for?

That’s why I’m so grateful for our co-parenting connection. By doing the work, I made my future and my kids future a lot brighter.

#parenting #grateful #communication

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