Divorced parents are no strangers to the variety of stressors often caused by the holiday season. That’s because there can be a variety of obstacles they have to overcome. In some cases, the separation may create tension and hostility between ex-spouses and their children.
However, there are ways that divorced parents can create a positive experience out of a complicated situation.
Putting the kids first
While it can be difficult for some couples, acting in the child’s best interest can help ease tensions and reduce conflicts between both parties. Depending on the circumstances, there are a variety of ways parents can share equal custody of their children over the holiday season:
- Switch holidays annually: In some instances, couples may choose to switch off who has the kids on the holidays each year. For example, one spouse may take the kids on Thanksgiving and Christmas every odd-numbered year while the other takes them on every even-numbered year. While some spouses may feel saddened by not spending every holiday with their kids, this method can help split quality time with their children equally.
- Split time spent between hours and days: Other parents may choose to alternate between hours or days. They may do so by having the kids spend the morning with one parent and the afternoon with the other. In other cases, they may have the kids spend Christmas Eve with one parent and Christmas Day with the other. The one setback to this approach is it can create added stress for both parents as they often must figure out how to transport kids between locations.
- Arrange alternative celebrations: Despite the chaos the holidays can bring, some parents may decide to celebrate with their kids on separate days. For example, if one parent has custody of the kids over Thanksgiving, the other parent may choose to do their Thanksgiving the weekend before or after.
Divorce can make celebrating more challenging
While the holidays are supposed to be filled with joy and cheer, they can often give divorced parents a headache. Those looking to create a holiday custody plan may want to seek legal counsel. An experienced and compassionate family law attorney can help divorced spouses devise an effective plan that works for both them and their children.