The holidays can be a stressful time. Shopping, planning or attending events and parties, school functions, and end-of-the-year obligations can quickly become overwhelming. For co-parents, the holidays can also mean difficult emotions and financial challenges. Co-parenting can be difficult at the best of times but can suddenly feel impossible as we head into the holidays. The important thing to remember is how you co-parent can affect your child during this time.
At Simpson Legal Group, we understand the challenges that co-parents can face. With over three decades of experience, we understand your challenges and what you can do to avoid some of the most common co-parenting mistakes.
The Kids Come First
The holidays are an important time for children – they will form some of their most important familial bonds and shared experiences that they will remember for the rest of their lives. Do your best to ensure the holidays are a cheerful time for them.
Don’t Wait to the Last Minute to Work on the Schedule
You want to get a detailed schedule nailed down well in advance. This way, you and your co-parent know what to expect. It also gives you time to deal with any unexpected issues or oversights that may arise. Do not forget to factor in travel time, even if you and your co-parent are staying local – being just a few minutes late can add to everyone’s stress.
Coordinate on Gifts
One of the most common issues this time of year is when one parent feels like they are competing with the other to give gifts to the children. Work together to ensure each parent is giving the children a fair balance of the gifts they need and the gifts they really want. Another option is to consider sharing the expense for the “big” gifts.
If you do not have custody of your child on the holiday, planning an alternative celebration can provide them with a valuable experience that you can both look forward to.
Take Care of Yourself
The holidays can be an incredibly difficult time for so many people. Many co-parenting issues are ultimately rooted in one or both parents feeling sad, lonely, or simply overwhelmed. Here are some self-care suggestions so that you can be a cheerful co-parent this holiday season:
- Surround yourself with friends and family
- Don’t be afraid to say “no”
- Do not neglect hobbies or activities that you enjoy
- Moderate your alcohol consumption
The holidays can be especially difficult for people in the first few years following their divorce. It is okay not to be okay, and you should not hesitate to take care of yourself to be there for your children.
Call Simpson Legal Group if You Are Facing Co-Parenting Issues
While many co-parenting issues can be resolved through an intentional effort by the parents, some issues require professional guidance. If you have co-parenting issues, contact us to discuss your options for resolving them. Call 712-256-9899 to schedule a consultation with a compassionate child custody lawyer.