Divorce or parentage actions touch upon our most raw emotions. Anger, betrayal, fear, regret. Whether you initiated the proceeding or were blindsided by a deputy sheriff at work, you will be going through a crock pot of emotions and really, really want to vent them.
Make sure you don’t do that in texts or emails to your former partner. You need to be aware that everything you say, do or especially write will probably end up being presented in some way before the judge at some point in the proceeding. While you may get a momentary satisfaction for telling the $@*!& just what you think of them, that text or email could cost you plenty later on.
Write every text message, every email with the understanding that you are writing it for at least four people – your former partner, the judge, and two attorneys. All will probably see it.
Every text or email should be written for the judge to show what a reasonable person you are, and where possible to show how unreasonable your former partner is. You are creating a paper trail so that the judge has something in her hand at a later date when both sides are declaring how they have tried to settle this or solve problems. The judge doesn’t want to be the arbiter of little issues, she wants to have the parties act like adults and solve things without wasting limited judicial resources. When you can show that you tried, via texts going back over time, to solve these little issues in an adult manner with a reasonable tone, you are more likely to have the judge listen to your side of the story in other matters that, well, really matter.
Don’t answer emails or texts when you are angry at something your ex just wrote; cool down a bit, run it past your attorney before replying. Anger will lead to sharp words that may hurt more than help. When they have written something nasty and you respond with something reasonable, you will win much more than the immediate battle – you may win the longer war.