When you’re going through a divorce, the holidays can be a trigger for extreme anxiety. Even if you have a cooperative, generally friendly relationship with your ex, the holidays may bring conflict, so it is a good idea to be prepared with some tools and coping mechanisms, just in case. We are a family law firm in Rockingham with years of legal experience in this field. We also are staffed by people who have personal experience with divorce and family law so you can be sure to get compassion and understanding, besides ideal legal advice. In order to help you avoid or stem drama, if you see it coming, we’ve come up with some helpful holiday hints.
Check your Court Order
- Details of a divorce can be hard to remember, so if you are not sure, check the paperwork. You can even make an extra copy of that section of your documentation and keep it in your calendar. If you depend on a digital calendar, add the dates for the whole of next year now so you will always have them at your fingertips.
- You’ll know the best way to communicate with your ex better than anyone. Call, text, or email about the plans for holiday visitation.
- If you will have the kids, and are going out of town and need to rearrange the non-custodial parent’s visitation, do it with plenty of time. You don’t want to be the source of holiday drama!
- If your kids are going to be spending time with the non-custodial parent and this is new for all of them, make sure you make a list of current medications and any other information that is important to the health and well-being of your child(ren).
- Be sure your communication is extended to your kids. Communicate with them about with whom they will be spending the holidays and where they will be going. Kids appreciate being kept in the loop as it shows you respect their feelings and know they are mature enough to handle it.
- If you and your ex agreed on everything, chances are you would still be married, but you are not and divorce is a chance that many parents take to impress their own personalities on their children, for better or for worse.
- The plain fact is that the other parent has a right to parent as they see fit, so long as the child or children are not in danger.
- Concentrate on things you can affect, don’t fixate on those you can’t. Even if the issue is something you don’t agree with, unless the kids are in danger, practice compassion for yourself, and all involved, and let it go.
Have a Back-up Plan
- If there is any chance at all that the non-custodial parent might cancel or attempt to change plans at the last minute, it’s a good idea to have a back-up plan.
- Snowstorms can cancel flights and people flake out on plans, so cover your bases, and your kids’ bases, and have a back-up plan.
Use Your Filter
- Be sure you don’t bad-mouth your ex in front of your kids. Save that stuff for your closest friends around whom you can safely vent.
- Kids are smart and will figure out behavior patterns all on their own, and seldom need to have things pointed out to them.
Take Care of Yourself
- Self care is an important part of parenting and should not be overlooked, especially during stressful times like the holidays.
- Take some time for yourself, for a spa day, an extra gym session, or a therapy session, whatever tool you use to reset yourself.
If you need any legal assistance enforcing or changing your current visitation order, call McGuire Law Firm.