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How to survive the holidays while co-parenting

With the holidays quickly approaching, many people are organizing plans with their families. For families of divorce, however, things may get a little complicated when it comes to sharing kids during this busy time of year. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to make the holidays fun, festive and stress free for you and your kids.

Before you begin planning holiday dinners and outings, make sure you arrange specific dates and times with your former spouse. Since it is rather common for plans to change, both parents should attempt to be flexible and accommodating in changing dates and rotating schedules. Not only does this make things simpler for the parents, but for the kids as well. Let your children see the schedule so they can look forward to upcoming events.

It is important that you don’t take the children out of town on a trip without alerting the other parent. In most divorce settlements, parents are required to get the other parents’ permission when leaving town with the children. You definitely don’t want to inadvertently disrupt the parenting plan and cause chaos during the holidays.

Although you may feel bitter toward your child’s other parent or toward your former in-laws, it is best to keep things friendly for the kids’ sake. Be polite to your children’s grandparents, and rather than start confrontation, spread the holiday spirit. Your children will appreciate it. By keeping your children's best interests in mind, you can make the holidays enjoyable for everyone.

Source: Communities Digital News, “Ten Tips for Happy Divorced Holidays,” Myra Fleischer, Nov. 14, 2016. 

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