According to an article written by Psychology Today contributor Robert E. Emery, PhD, there are better ways to manage divorce and co-parenting during the holiday season.
If you are newly divorced, you are probably eager to move on and start fresh. However, learning to interact positively with your ex-spouse is absolutely essential if you have children. To be clear, you need not be friends with your former spouse, nor should you suppress your hurt and anger or pretend to be happy to see them—but you do need to co-parent with civility for the benefit of your children.
Here are five key things to remember this holiday season as you parent your child after divorce:
- You can still make the holidays memorable for your kids. Even if you are crushed and disappointed following your divorce, you can still boost your children’s spirits by doing fun activities together and creating new traditions or encouraging them to enjoy themselves while spending the holiday with your ex-spouse.
- Invest in the things that matter most. It’s no secret that divorce can be expensive, and money may be tighter than ever since you and your spouse went your separate ways. Heaping guilt onto yourself for not being able to afford expensive gifts for your children can only make matters worse. As you seek to parent alone this holiday season, remember that the best things you can give your children are safety, security, time, attention, and emotional presence.
- Refuse to compete with your spouse. Many couples fall into the emotional trap of vying for their children’s affection by spoiling them and competing with their spouse. This can lead you to spend more than you should, and it will all but guarantee that the holidays will be more emotionally draining than relaxing.
- Talk to your children’s other parent in advance. Chances are, you will still be fuming well into 2019 if you don’t take the time to coordinate your holiday plans with your ex-spouse now. It can save you much frustration to connect with your children’s other parent via text or email and avoid classic mistakes like buying the same presents or sending your kids to multiple holiday feasts in one day. If you are unable to speak briefly over text or email, it may be wise to send in another one of your child’s relatives to help make plans, such as a grandparent, aunt, or uncle.
Alternative Divorce Mediation Services in Orange County
If you haven’t yet divorced but are planning to do so over the holidays, consider coming to Alternative Divorce Solutions. We provide comprehensive marriage dissolution services, and we have the skill and experience to help you quickly resolve even the most complex aspects of your divorce. We have guided many couples through the process of emotional, financial, and practical separation, and we are prepared to counsel you and help you set yourself up for success as a single parent.
Call (949) 558-2624 today to speak to a divorce mediation lawyer in Orange County.