Tips for Handling the Holidays with Kids after Divorce

Posted on in Child Custody

Illinois family law attorney, child custody,American culture emphasizes the importance of spending time with one's family during the holidays. This can make the holidays a particularly difficult season after a divorce. It can often be made tougher by the long wait for them to roll around because statistically speaking, divorces are most common just after the start of the new year. This means that there can be a big gap between when the divorce starts and the next holiday season. Fortunately, there are many strategies people can use to make the holidays run more smoothly after a divorce.

Plan Ahead

Planning ahead for the holiday season can make everyone involved happier. Children are likely going to need to be shuttled between different celebrations for different parts of their extended families. That means that the two ex-spouses are going to need to work together to coordinate how pickups and drop offs work and who is going to be where and when. Alternatively, if the custody schedule creates holidays that alternate by year, then it is important to plan early for which parent is responsible for the kids during the holidays and to develop a system that works well for everyone involved. It can also be helpful to bring the kids themselves in on the planning. Accommodating their thoughts on how they want to spend the holidays, to the extent possible, can help improve everyone's mood during the season.

Avoid Fighting the Divorce

The holidays tend to come with lots of opportunities to try to fight against the divorce's effects on a person's life. Family relationships are changing. Holiday traditions are changing. It can be tempting to try to cling to things by over-indulging children with presents or trying to recreate old holiday traditions that do not fit the new family structure. However, this can only cause problems in the long run. Indulging children will lead to financial woes, and old holiday traditions may not work in the new setting. It is better to accept the changes brought by the divorce and to develop new traditions that can help with family bonding.

Remember That It Is the Holiday Season

The holidays are a time of joy, especially for children. Fighting parents digging up old divorce grudges can make the season more difficult for them. This part of the year calls for particularly great amounts of civility and flexibility on the part of both parents. Even if the parents cannot get along in the long term, an extra effort towards having a businesslike relationship over the short holiday season can go a long way towards making everyone's holiday better.

Divorce can be an emotionally difficult process, but you do not have to go through it alone. Reach out to a dedicated DuPage County divorce attorney today to learn more about the process and all your options.

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