The holiday season is supposed to be a time of love, joy, and togetherness. In reality, for many, it is often a hectic and stressful time, especially for divorced parents who are learning how to navigate the challenges presented by their new circumstances. One of the most important steps you can take to reduce conflicts this holiday season is to review your holiday parenting schedule so you can avoid arranging events that conflict with your co-parent’s time with the children. If there is an activity you are interested in planning with the children that require your co-parent to swap days, do not mention it at the last minute. You are more likely to get what you want if you are considerate and ask your co-parent for this favor in advance.
Cooperating with Your Co-Parent
Even if communication and cooperation was not your strong suit during your marriage, that does not mean you cannot work on it now as divorced co-parents. Although you are no longer married, you will continue to be in each other’s lives as co-parents, so it is in everyone’s best interests for you to work on improving these areas of weakness in your relationship.
Here are some additional tips to help you effectively co-parent during the holiday season:
- Be kind: It might seem obvious, but some things are less easy to put into practice when you let your emotions take the wheel. If you do not have something nice to say to your spouse, you probably should not say it at all, or the situation will escalate. Stick to kid-related topics and only engage in constructive discussions. You should especially avoid getting into arguments in front of your children.
- Have a conversation: You do not necessarily need to go to court for every minor change you wish to make to the holiday parenting schedule. Try to have a conversation with your co-parent first to see if you can reach an agreement. If you cannot agree on the changes or the language in your holiday parenting schedule is a bit vague, you should consult with an attorney.
- Be good to yourself: If you fail to keep up with self-care, you might not be in the best of moods this holiday season, which will do everyone a disservice. Take some time to be good to yourself, even if all you have time for is a hot bubble bath or a night binge-watching your favorite show.
- Do not compete through gift-giving: No matter what your reasons are for wanting to buy your children the most expensive and elaborate gift, it likely will not go over well with your former spouse. It will look like you are trying to compete for the children’s affections and highlight the tension in your relationship. Be reasonable with your gifts and avoid one-upping each other.
Discuss Your Case with a Family Law Attorney Today!
At Myers Family Law, we know how difficult it is to navigate the holidays as a divorced parent. If you encounter any issues that cannot be resolved without legal assistance, you can count on our experienced team to provide the advice and guidance you need to achieve your goals.
Call us today at (916) 634-0067 to schedule a low-cost 30-minute consultation.