The holidays can be a difficult time for newly divorced parents. Finding a way to co-parent with your ex-spouse to spend time with your kids can be difficult, but it is possible, and it is necessary. Fighting with your ex can be harmful for your kids, especially during the holidays. To help you co-parent during your festive season, here are a few tips you can try to follow:
Create a long-term plan
Whether it is one parent having the kids for Christmas Eve and the other having them for Christmas Day, or each parent trades primary custody during the holidays each year, creating a holiday plan that you can look to for years in the future can help both parents in the long run.
It is perfectly fine to celebrate a holiday outside of its date on a calendar. If you cannot celebrate a holiday on the actual date, your kids will likely be thrilled to celebrate the day a second time the next time they see you.
Do not turn gifts into weapons
When a parent tries to “out-gift” their ex, they may be doing may harm than good for their children. This out-gifting can create a more hostile relationship between you and your former spouse, and may make things harder for everyone in the long run.
Make new traditions
The traditions you held before your divorce may not always be possible. If you can find a way to update your old traditions, your kids will love them just the same. Otherwise, talk to your kids and come up with new traditions together. Kids are often more interested in spending time with you rather than how they spend time with you.
Do not fight in front of the kids
Arguing with your spouse to uphold their end of the holiday agreement may not be something you can avoid, but it is not something your kids need to see. Avoid fighting in front of your kids to keep them from associating the holidays with arguments.
Have a happy holiday!
While the holidays may not always be easy, they can be worth it. By putting in a bit of extra effort, your kids can have great holidays that are worth looking forward to next year. Even if you and your ex do not normally get along, try to put your differences aside and work together for your children.