The holiday season is upon us. For divorced parents, it can be a stressful and a sad time. The focus should be on what is best for the children and how to make this an enjoyable time for them while considering the new family structure. It is recommended to focus on forming new positive traditions while still including important fun elements of the past instead of thinking of what has been lost.
Tips for Making the Holiday Season for Your Children Enjoyable
Plan ahead and make a schedule for the children so they will know when they will spend time with each parent. Consider important events the children may traditionally be involved in, either with their school, extracurricular activities, or their friends and make plans accordingly. Accommodating your children’s schedule can be very beneficial to their well-being and happiness. It’s important that parents communicate and put the children’s interest above their own. Specifically, consider:
- What special events will be happening over the holidays and how and when will each parent be involved?
- Who is going to be with the children at which times?
- How will the exchange of the children take place?
- Depending on the ages of the children, discuss with them the holiday schedule so they will be a part of the planning.
- Decorate your home and plan events that are fun. Listen to holiday music together and watch movies or shows that align with the season.
Most of all, be flexible. If something unexpected happens, be open to change.
Take Care of Yourself
It can be lonely when the children are with the other parent. Although this is true throughout the year, it can become more apparent during the holiday season. It helps if you have a counselor, coach, or even friends and family you can talk to.
Don’t be self-critical. This is something many single parents have to go through. You must realize that you’re not alone and balance the sadness with moments of joy and happiness in ways you would know best. Spend time with your friends and go to fun events so that you’re not always alone at home. Humor and laughter can make the best of an unpleasant situation.
If your children are not with you on the actual holiday, pick another day and celebrate it the same way you would have, and the time together with your children will still be special and memorable.
If you need help getting through the holidays and making a schedule with your co-parent, contact us at Kim Mediation and Law Center. We may be able to help.