Guy Ritchie 'Is treading on eggshells not to upset Madonna' as they work toward a custody agreement

Guy Ritchie is cautiously pursuing a resolution to his ongoing custody war with Madonna.

A Ritchie source tells WHO The Man from U.N.C.L.E. filmmaker "is treading on eggshells not to upset" his ex-wife before they come to an agreement about where their 15-year-old son Rocco will live.

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The source adds Ritchie's camp "expects the saga to be resolved imminently" – and that "he does feel he has emerged victorious."

The international custody battle began when Rocco left his mom's tour to live with his dad in the U.K. in December but refused to return to New York for the holidays, ignoring a judge's order. (Her Rebel Heart tour continues in Australia, where she was spotted in Melbourne on Wednesday.)

Madonna and Guy Ritchie. Photo: Getty

And while Ritchie is hoping for a settlement in his favor soon, lawyers for Madonna, 57, and Ritchie, 47, as well as Rocco's court-appointed attorney, have been working toward an agreement outside of court. They nearly had come to a compromise last week before it fell apart ahead of a March 2 hearing in New York. But for the time being, Rocco will be staying in London as they continue to negotiate behind closed doors.

As a friend of the former couple told WHO in January, Madonna "is going to fight, fight, fight, and she is going to fight to the end."

Meanwhile, Rocco's recent behavior has his mother worried. Since moving in with his dad, the teenager has shaved his head, broken his wrist and been photographed taking a hit off a suspicious-looking cigarette.

Rocco Ritchie. Photo: Madonna Instagram

"She is very concerned about her son's well-being at this time," a source close to the singer told WHO after the hearing. "Madonna's devotion to all her children, their education and spiritual well-being is legendary in her circle of friends."

The source added: "Madonna sees the damage that's being done to Rocco, who has so much potential, which by his father's influence is now being wasted and destroyed due to lack of guidance from a man who seems out for revenge instead trying to raise his children to be successful human beings ... This is not a custody battle. This is a mother trying desperately to protect her son."

For more on Madonna and Guy Ritchie's war over their son Rocco, pick up the new issue of WHO –on sale now.

Jeff Nelson writes for People.