Celebrating the holidays with your children after divorce can place a tremendous amount of emotional strain on the included parties. For many, the holidays are the time of year to celebrate with friends and family. This is not always so simple to do once you and your ex have parted ways. Who gets to celebrate with mutual friends? How do you determine what your plans will be? What was once a joyous time has now become stressful and difficult. With lots of considerations, the best way to ensure a pleasant holiday experience is to be well prepared.
Avoiding conflict is critical in ensuring the best possible experience. Some relationships end amicably while others, unfortunately, mimic our past World Wars. Nothing good comes of it and people get hurt left and right. If both divorced parties can maintain a pleasant atmosphere, spending the holidays together with your children is ideal. This will make your children happy and will show them that even though the marriage ended, the love they have for their children, and the children’s’ happiness, is most important.
If spending the holidays together is not an option, the next best bet is to start planning.
When it comes to children, they like to know what is on the agenda. How many times have you told your children to get ready to leave and the first thing out of their mouth is was, “Where are we going?” Children crave this type of information. This is especially true during the holiday season. Before telling them your plans, be sure to discuss your plans with your ex. He or she may have their own plans that could contradict yours. Once you and your ex have agreed on a schedule, discuss your plans with your children. Do not discuss your ex’s plans. That is his or her plans to share.
Listening to Our Children
Ask your children what they want to do while spending time with you. This does not necessarily mean you will do what they want because some kids dream big, but let them talk. If what they want is to have a family holiday celebration with both parents but that is not an option, let them know. You have to explain to them that this type of celebration is not best for all parties.
Starting New Traditions
New traditions can be exciting. They can also be very distracting in a difficult time. Encourage your children to share ideas that will help make their holiday experience better. You do not have to break the bank with new traditions but instead find something that everyone can enjoy doing together.
If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at (714) 841-1931, or fill out a free consultation request here.