The holiday season is supposed to be a time for family time and festive activities. For divorcing couples (and people in troubled relationships) it could be a time of frustration and despair, especially if there are children involved. Indeed, parents want to do the best for their children, and expectations between parents may not be realized either through scheduling conflicts or other disagreements.
These conflicts may create more angst and hurt feelings, which can ruin the holidays; but it doesn’t have to be that way. Through this post, we will set forth some helpful tips that will help you communicate better and get the most out of the holiday season.
Know your order – It is important to know what your custody order or parenting plan allows during the holiday season. This is especially important when it comes to quirks in a schedule that were not contemplated while the order was negotiated. For instance, if you normally have the children for dinner on Tuesday nights, but the order says that your ex gets them for Christmas Eve, this is a conflict that will have to be resolved.
Be open to change and flexibility – If there is one thing that is constant during the holidays, it is that things hardly ever go as planned. With that said, be open to changes and flexibility when it comes to exchanges. Weather and traffic commonly make parents late for pick up and drop off.
Compromise is the key - Kids enjoy the holidays when they know that their parents are okay. This means that when you put your differences aside (even if it is for a day) they can learn what the season is really about.
Source: HuffingtonPost.com, “Surviving the co-parenting ‘holiday shuffle’” Michelle Crosby, November 18, 2013