For divorcing or divorced couples, the ideal is to not be opponents or adversaries; in reality, however, your ex will likely try to wrestle for control. Over the years, I have seen many types of behaviors that exes employ, and I have narrowed the field to an interesting few: The Intimidator, The Passive Aggressor, The Terrorist, The Manipulator, The Victim and The Cooperator (aka the best kind of ex.)
The "Intimidator" This is the ex who goes out of his or her way to make you think that he/she is more powerful. They may make inferences that you are less than worthy, that they are better off than you -- this could be financially or personally. This type often does not bully openly, but finds covert ways to assert himself or herself, and play the "one-upsmanship" game.
The "Passive Aggressor" I know people who would rather have a serial killer as an ex than a Passive Aggressor, because these are the most devious and difficult type of all to handle. They will engage in all sorts of passive acts to try to disturb your equilibrium. Where The Intimidator might boldly enter a parent-teacher conference with a new mate on his/her arm, The Passive Aggressor will sit down to the conference and a few minutes later his/her new mate will show up. They set you up by playing the "who, me?" game with tactics like out-spending the other parent on the children's holiday or birthday gifts. This type uses quiet methods to snatch control and often they craftily strategize in the background using friends, family, business associates, and the truly innocent victims, the children, to carry out their attacks.
This is the first in a three-part series that encourages you to ask yourself: "What Type is My Ex?"
Excerpt can be found in my book -
DIVORCE: It's All About Control -- How to Win the Emotional, Psychological and Legal Wars