The holiday season in America is a time that people make a point of spending with their families. In fact, the U.S. Department of Transportation reports a 54 percent spike in travel around the holidays as people traverse the country to visit their families. All this emphasis on togetherness can make the holidays after a divorce a difficult time especially for people with children who will likely need to see both sides of the family over the course of the season. Fortunately, people have ways of making the holidays easier on everyone after the divorce, so that the kids can still enjoy this special time of year.
The biggest thing that divorced parents can do to make the holidays simpler is to avoid conflict. The season only lasts for about a month, but kids can remember holiday fights for a lifetime. Everyone is under a lot of familial pressure during this time of year, and that can make people more prone to fighting, but putting off conflicts that do not need to be settled urgently and keeping old arguments buried for a month will make the whole season easier. Divorced parents do not need to be the best of friends, but cultivating a civil, business-like relationship based on compromise can make the holidays after a divorce go smoother. In fact, it can make parenting after a divorce smoother all year round.
Plan Things out
Another way of avoiding family drama during the holiday season is through an abundance of planning. Ex-spouses know their former in-laws' routines. They know who celebrates which holidays and when. They probably even used to have a plan for how to see both sides of the family during the holiday season. The divorce is no reason to throw all of this information out.
Both parents know that everyone is going to want to see the grandchildren, and this time of year is not the place to be petty or obstinate. Working out compromises in advance of the holidays can make it easier to cope. Figure out who gets to see the kids on which days. Work out if they are going to be moving between different parties on the same day. Talk about when and where the children have to be. Even work out the practical details like which parent is responsible for making sure the children get somewhere on time. These plans do not have to be perfect, but it is important for parents to figure out an arrangement they can live with since this will not be the last time the holidays come around.
The realities of divorce may appear daunting, but spouses do not have to go through it alone. Contact an experienced Naperville divorce attorney today to learn more about how they can guide you through the process.