One of the most difficult times of the year for families going through a divorce or those finding their footing in the wake of a divorce is during Thanksgiving, Christmas and the New Year. Therefore, for parents, it is crucial for the sake of their children, their ex and themselves that they learn how to successfully co-parent during the holidays.
What Are the Keys to Successfully Co-Parenting During the Holidays?
Recently, Divorce Magazine featured an article with tips for how to co-parent during the holidays, including:
- Put your kids first – Make sure you are doing things that enable your kids to enjoy the holiday season and time with you and your family. For instance, if you and your ex are going to try to share time with your children on Thanksgiving or Christmas Day, try to create a schedule that allows them plenty of time to relax and enjoy time with each of you and your families. The last thing you want to do is have them rushing from location to location, which could just lead to them getting tired out and not having a chance to spend quality time with you or the rest of your family.
- Create a plan ahead of time – If you and your co-parent do not already have a parenting plan in place that includes a schedule that fairly divides your time with the kids during the holidays, then before the holiday season ramps up, you should sit down together and set one up. Having firm plans in place ahead of time will allow you to set up a realistic schedule for what you and your kids will do during your time together.
- Be open to your plans changing – Plans change. Kids get sick. Special events that you want to share with your children may wind up falling on days or nights when the kids are scheduled to be with your ex or vice versa. You and your co-parent need to be open to re-arranging your holiday schedule to do what’s best for your kids and maximize their enjoyment of the holiday season.
- Make sure your gifts are coordinated – Talk with your ex-spouse about gifts before you two go out and buy Christmas or Hanukkah gifts. You should make sure that you have a price limit in place and discuss the number of gifts you should each get your kids. In addition, you should agree on what gifts are appropriate and what gifts are not appropriate for your children. Also, you should say what gifts you are each buying for the kids so that you do not end up duplicating gifts.
- Don’t forget to take care of yourself – The holidays are a busy and stressful time. Make sure that you are taking time to eat right, get sleep, exercise, enjoy some alone time and spend time with friends. You don’t want to get sick or take away from quality time with your kids because you are exhausted.
At the Law Offices of Diane J.N. Morin, we are dedicated to providing our clients with high quality legal services they can afford. Palo Alto divorce lawyer Diane Morin has experience as both a prosecutor and defense attorney. She has over 30 years of legal experience and has worked with clients from around the world. For more information about filing for divorce or how to co-parent during the holidays, call us today to set up a consultation.