No matter what point you are in the divorce process, you’ll eventually need to consider what to do about the holidays. It can be hard to imagine Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas or your own favorite holiday without the kids. There may be holiday traditions you treasure that might not always be possible in the future. How do you share important holidays with your children’s other parent?
Focus on Making It Fun for the Kids
No one wants their children to remember holidays as a hassle. We also don’t want the holidays after the divorce to be something less special than they were before. Focusing on your kids’ needs can go a long way towards keeping their holidays magical and special.
Keep in mind that your children may have strong feelings during the holiday season. They may feel a sense of loss over changes to their holiday traditions. This may only add to their sense of loss of the family unit. Try to help your kids talk about and process their feelings. It might not be easy, but it’s vital.
Consider Continuing to Spend Holidays Together as a Family
If you can do it without undue conflict, this might be a good strategy for continuing to feel like a family. Can you still cooperate on trick-or-treating? Could you spend Christmas morning together? If you can, it could be a terrific way to show your kids that you’re still parenting together.
If You Can’t Spend Holidays Together, Create New Traditions
Try to find out what holiday traditions are most important to your kids. If something they love won’t always be available after the divorce, try to institute new traditions to make the holidays special.
Decorate your home. Maybe your kids would like to make or pick out the decorations? The traditions don’t have to be expensive or complex. It could be as simple as making hot chocolate and watching a movie on Christmas Eve.
The process of re-thinking the holidays could even help you get over your grief about how holidays once were.
Your Divorce Settlement Agreement Should Be a Help
In most cases, you will negotiate how to handle the holidays and put that in your co-parenting agreement, which becomes a court order when your divorce is final.
Although you should always try to follow the schedule, there are bound to be situations that arise that will require some compromise. Therefore, it’s a good idea to build a method for dispute resolution into your agreement.
Remember, your children’s well-being is the ultimate priority during the holiday season. If you’re facing challenges in co-parenting, seeking professional guidance can be a transformative step. Reach out to a compassionate attorney who goes the extra mile to make a real difference in your co-parenting journey. Your proactive action today can pave the way for a brighter, more harmonious future for your family.