Loving Your Children More Than You Hate Each Other
Powerful Tools for Navigating a High-Conflict Divorce
Published by: New Harbinger Publications
Imprint: New Harbinger Publications
Hate your ex but love your kids? If so, this much-needed guide offers practical tips and strategies to help you manage intense emotions, deal with shame and blame, and create a peaceful, loving environment for your children.
Let’s face it—divorce is tough. In a high-conflict divorce, your ex may attempt to undermine your relationship with your children, blame you for the failed marriage, and be hostile toward you in general. Unfortunately, this negativity can affect your kids, too. You need to break the cycle of rage and conflict now, for their sake. This book can help.
Loving Your Children More Than You Hate Each Other offers powerful skills based in dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) and values-based parenting to help you both take control of your emotions. You’ll get tools to help you identify cycles of conflict, as well as strategies for breaking these cycles before they get out of hand. You’ll also learn strategies to effectively communicate with one another and your children in a way that is healthy and productive.
If you’re going through a high-conflict divorce, you need real tools to help you manage the pain and anger that can follow. This book will show you the skills you need to go from ex to co-parent, and start rebuilding your—and your child’s—life.
PART 1: Your Personal Journey
1. High-Conflict Divorce and the Emotions of Unresolved Mourning 8
2. Understanding Your Brain in Conflict 29
3. Skills and Strategies for Emotion Regulation 43
4. Transforming Yourself from Victim to Survivor to Hero 75
PART 2: Your Journey as a Co-Parent
5. Parental Conflict 96
6. Creating Safety in Co-parenting 126
7. Loving Your Kids More Than Loving the Fight 147
8. Divorce Recovery 168
“I recommend this practical and insightful book to all parents who love their children and seek to preserve their well-being during and after divorce.”~Hon. Sondra M. Miller
—Hon. Sondra M. Miller, Retired Justice of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court, Second Department
“In this book, Lauren Behrman and Jeffrey Zimmerman have given divorcing parents a remarkable resource for ‘radical acceptance’ of one’s former spouse as he or she actually is—the starting point for putting aside attachment to who is right and who is wrong, and instead cultivating the conditions in oneself for doing the best possible job of minimizing conflict and maximizing good parenting. Behrman and Zimmerman translate wisdom from many traditions—psychotherapy, brain science, dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), mindful awareness, and much more into very practical tools and techniques for moving from victimhood toward competency and equanimity. While their book is addressed to parents in high-conflict divorces, the techniques they offer can make the challenges of raising kids in two households easier for every divorcing couple.”~Pauline H. Tesler
—Pauline H. Tesler, longtime family law specialist, fellow of the select American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, and founding director of the Integrative Law Institute at Commonweal
“Loving Your Children More Than You Hate Each Other is a valuable, interactive guide for co-parents caught in the struggles of a high-conflict divorce. Authors Behrman and Zimmerman cover a full range of emotional responses and behavior patterns that hinder co-parenting success. With compassion and wisdom, they offer strategies for detoxifying messages and generating positive alternatives that build bridges toward safety, respect, and cooperation that support everyone in the family.”~Rosalind Sedacca
—Rosalind Sedacca, divorce and parenting coach; founder of the Child-Centered Divorce Network
“Expertly weaving contributions from our understanding of the grief process, DBT, mindfulness, and their own extensive work with high-conflict co-parents, the authors provide professionals and parents a guide to healing and building respectful and functional co-parenting relationships, even when they would rather keep fighting. The beneficiaries of this well-organized, practical book are children and building a societal ethic of cooperative shared parenting.”~Matthew Sullivan, PhD
—Matthew Sullivan, PhD, founder of Overcoming Barriers, a nonprofit organization that provides training and programs for high-conflict shared custody; coauthor of Overcoming the Co-Parenting Trap
“Loving Your Children More Than You Hate Each Other is an easy-to-read, practical guide for parents to reduce conflict and recover from divorce by focusing on the needs of their children. Parents will identify with the emotional challenges that are described and, through meaningful exercises, move into a new, more resilient and centered place. Behrman and Zimmerman walk parents through this recovery process, incorporating vignettes parents can identify with and ideas from brain science, mindfulness, and DBT to develop skills and techniques that reduce anger and build coping. This is a must-read for parents in conflict who want to move on, focus on raising healthy and well-adjusted children, and learn life skills that make them feel like heroes, rather than survivors or victims.”~Robin M. Deutsch, PhD, ABPP
—Robin M. Deutsch, PhD, ABPP, director of the Center of Excellence for Children, Families and the Law; professor in the clinical psychology doctoral program at William James College; and coauthor of 7 Things Your Teenager Won’t Tell You