Co-Parenting Through the Holidays

The holidays are upon us. The holiday season should be a happy and enjoyable time for you and your family. For divorced families, however, the holidays may also prompt feelings of stress and anxiety. Here are some basic suggestions to ease some of the stress that may accompany co-parenting through the holidays.

First, if you have questions about your children’s schedule over the holiday season, referencing your parenting-time schedule is a great place to start. As you may recall, the parenting-time schedule is an agreement that designates specific times for a parent and child to spend time together. Many divorced couples can agree to a fair parenting-time schedule without involvement from the courts.

The parenting-time schedule should include where the kids are spending, Thanksgiving, Christmas or Hanukah this year. Take a look at the schedule in advance to avoid confusion or miscommunication between you and your ex-spouse. This will save you a lot of time and keep tensions low in what should be a happy and memorable time for you and your family.

Second, set some time aside to plan ahead and communicate with your co-parent over the holiday season. For instance, coordinate gifts, extended family visits, and when/where you will meet to drop the children off before committing to big holiday plans. These may seem like simple suggestions, but these suggestions are often overlooked over the busy holiday season. As a result, be proactive and start making plans with your co-parent before things get too crazy.

Lastly, this holiday season may be a difficult time for families that have recently separated. If this situation applies to you, try to be open and flexible with your co-parent and children to make the transition as easy as possible. This is the time for you and your family to start making new traditions. Accordingly, try to be receptive and open to new ideas. Your willingness to try new things will make the holidays more enjoyable and exciting for everyone.

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