In most cases, divorce doesn't completely end the relationship between former spouses -- and that's especially true when kids are involved. So how do you keep communication civil after a messy split?

"I know for me personally, it's really critical to keep my relationship on a strictly business level [rather than an emotional one,]" divorce strategist Nancy Kay said on HuffPost Live. "I found that to be really hard in the beginning, but it's been well worth working towards and the consistency is really key. I have found that to be in my own case and also when I guide my clients, especially in high-conflict divorces that involved co-parenting following the divorce."

Kay admits that keeping the dialogue business-like can be a challenge, but she had one specific recommendation for people struggling to communicate with a former partner.

"It's really tough to not fall back into old patterns of communication. But I highly recommend to my clients that they only communicate through e-mail that can be printed out and has a time and date stamp, and I really recommend that they write it like a ransom note; just think of it as if each word they write costs $5000, what's the least amount of words I can put in this communication that gets my point across in the email?"

Watch the segment above for more advice on how to communicate with an ex, and check out the full segment here.

Keep in touch! Check out HuffPost Divorce on Facebook and Twitter.

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  • McCain's Effect On Love

    Dave isn't into "Big Government" and Beth isn't into "Big" Dave; this courtship was bound to fail. <a href="http://files.sharenator.com/DearDaveIl_individual_Break_Up_Letter_From_Hell-s400x441-34392-580.jpg" target="_hplink">(source)</a>

  • The Giraffe

    We actually feel bad for this girl. It's not often you lose the most awesome guy ever. <a href="http://www.buzzfeed.com/minjaeormes/breaking-up-is-hard-to-do-ohu/">(source)</a>

  • Didn't See That Coming

    Poor Erin, the worst thing after getting a compliment is to get dumped. The 2nd worst thing is to realize how well your ex can turn "100,000,000 sparkly trampolines" into poetry. <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/seeyourvoice/3553297430/">(source)</a>

  • It's Over. 4or Real.

    Does spelling "for" wrong ease the pain of a break up? If you're 8 or older, yes. <a href="http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2250/2384858694_2eabb897a4.jpg%3Fv%3D0&imgrefurl=http://flickr.com/photos/neogoddess/2384858694/&usg=__Ju0jUECtDOV8CzzTiU_oM-nlxSc=&h=500&w=321&sz=120&hl=en&start=15&sig2=cZu84YrbAOoYGIcHDLE2TA&um=1&itbs=1&tbnid=4yI46OBEXV9nwM:&tbnh=130&tbnw=83&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dbreak%2Bup%2Bletters%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26safe%3Doff%26sa%3DN%26rlz%3D1G1GGLQ_ENUS312%26tbs%3Disch:1&ei=EF-2S9P-HYWdlgeGvuhU">(source)</a>

  • Salt, Meet Wound

    I know it, you know it, Sparky knows it. <a href="http://www.lionsdenu.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/Breakup-Letter.jpg">(source)</a>

  • The Overdramatic Letter

    "That is the gift I got from you...Love. It never dies and will never lessen, subside or disapear. We will meet again one day in heaven and we'll love each other like there was no pause." In another situation, receiving this letter would be grounds for breaking up with its author. <a href="http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=break+up+letter&go=&form=QBIR&qs=n&sk=&sc=2-11#focal=def723c7b46352ff20b4f144da4703b9&furl=http%3A%2F%2Ffoundmagazine.com%2Fimages%2Ffinds%2Ffull%2Fbreakupletterotherside.gif">(source)</a>

  • BUSTED!

    Hard to tell if she's upset at the pics or the fact that she's fat.

  • Effective Advertising

    Love is hard, but eventually you learn that the best way to confront your problems is to post them on billboards. <a href="http://www.boreme.com/media/yr2006/billboard-breakup.jpg">(source)</a>

  • Personals Get Personal

    We're guessing they had communication problems. <a href="http://sweetiegirlz.files.wordpress.com/2009/05/break-up-by-news-paper.jpgf">(source)</a>

  • Star Wars References Will Not Win Her Back

    After being dumped by your girlfriend, the next logical step is to profess your love to her through Star Wars references. <a href="http://www.baconbabble.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/break-up-letters-51.jpg">(source)</a>

  • Break Up Letter Fiasco

    For the thrilling conclusion and dramatic reading of this letter, please click <a href="http://youmakemetouchyourhandsforstupidreasons.ytmnd.com/">here</a>.