If you are a divorced parent in California, you may be concerned about how you will manage holidays in a way that will be in the best interests of your children. This can be an emotional time in which both parents and children feel the loss of their united family, but there are several things parents can do to make holidays more enjoyable for everyone.
Ideally, the holiday schedule should be set during divorce negotiations, which often involves working out details such as where children will be for important occasions. This removes some of the uncertainty both children and parents will be facing at this time of year. However, even if this has not been agreed upon beforehand, parents can make a schedule using the same principles.
Dividing up holidays
One parent might already traditionally spend the holiday with their family. If this is the case, this might be a good time for them to have the children. Plans should be made as far in advance as possible. However, parents should also try to be flexible and accommodating in planning around the availability of extended family who will want to spend time with the children.
Making holidays work
If the holiday involves exchanging gifts, parents should try to communicate about what they are getting the child so that there is no duplication. They can also help the child shop for gifts. Discussing plans with children can help them feel reassured that no one is being left out and that they do not need to feel guilty that the other parent will not be involved in the celebrations.
Holidays after divorce can be hard on everyone, and parents who are away from their children should make plans to be near loved ones. Self-care will help divorced parents take better care of their children as well.