Entertainment Love and Romance Using The Family Court System to Abuse a Spouse Are You Using the Family Court System to Abuse Your Ex? Share PINTEREST Email Print Courtesy Paul Simcock via Getty Images Love and Romance Divorce Relationships Sexuality Teens LGBTQ Friendship By Cathy Meyer University of Florida Cathy Meyer is a certified divorce coach, marriage educator, freelance writer, and founding editor of DivorcedMoms.com. As a divorce mediator, she provides clients with strategies and resources that enable them to power through a time of adversity. our editorial process Facebook Facebook Twitter Twitter Cathy Meyer Updated July 14, 2017 Why your spouse is using the family court system to harass and abuse you? Will you be able to settle or will you end up in divorce court? The only reason divorcing couples end up in divorce court is because one or the other refuses to negotiate, mediate or be flexible and come to an agreement with the other. Ninety-five percent of all divorces are settled outside the courtroom. That is an encouraging statistic, but it needs to be known that the other 5% are the ones that keep the family court system working over time. It is that 5% that tend to go back to court repeatedly. At times over frivolous issues that could be solved if one of the parties would make the choice to respond to the situation in a rational manner. It has been my experience when working with clients that the underlying issue with people who are continually going back to court is the need to get even with or, get revenge on an ex-spouse. There is either the spouse who refuses to follow through on an agreement in an attempt to get back at their ex-spouse or the spouse who withholds child visitation or child support in an attempt to get back at an ex-spouse. They use the family court system to keep from having to deal with each other and to keep from having to accept responsibility for the role they play in the ongoing conflict with their ex-spouse. It is toxic behavior that damages all involved including the one engaging in the behavior. In other words, they keep a legal system backlogged because they have emotional issues that need to be dealt with. So, here is some advice from me, if your ex pushes your buttons emotionally and you want to get back at her/him by going to court, get thee to a therapist’s office, not an attorney’s office. Karin Huffer, a marriage and family counselor in Las Vegas has identified a new disorder for a nation already reeling from chronic fatigue syndrome, Internet addiction disorder and other new-age afflictions. What is Legal Abuse Syndrome? It's called “legal abuse syndrome”, and it can strike crime victims, litigants, attorneys, and anyone who has dealt with the family court system. According to Dr. Huffer, “legal abuse syndrome (LAS) is a form of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It is a psychic injury, not a mental illness. It is a personal injury that develops in individuals assaulted by ethical violations, legal abuses, betrayals, and fraud. Abuse of power and authority and a profound lack of accountability in our courts have become rampant.” Using the family court system to abuse an ex only promotes more conflict. If you are of the belief that going back to court or engaging in behavior that defies a divorce court order you are engaging in legal abuse. A therapist can teach you skills needed to resolve conflict in a healthier manner, skills that will save you not only emotional stress but all the money you give a divorce attorney every time you are angry with your ex. If you are the victim of an ex who uses the family court to abuse or harass you, speak to your attorney about your legal options and, do what you need to do for yourself to keep from becoming emotionally overwhelmed.