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Handling the first few post-divorce child custody holidays

The holiday season is just around the corner. Plans are being made for special meals, and the stores are filled with decorations and gift ideas. For some in Texas, however, the holidays are not always a time to celebrate. Parents who have recently gone through a child custody struggle often dread the holiday season and the seemingly endless opportunities for conflict that the next few weeks will provide.

When navigating the first few holidays that follow a divorce, parents should make every effort to work together to make this time positive for shared children. One way to transition into a two-household holiday system is for both parents to begin new traditions in their respective homes. This process is easier when parents can discuss the matter beforehand and work together to ensure that their new traditions are compatible with each other.

Another way to make the holidays more joyful is to involve friends and family. Including loved ones in holiday celebrations can give children a sense of support, which is important as they adjust to their altered family structure. In addition, placing a focus on friends and family is a great way to remind everyone of the true reasons behind holiday celebrations.

In certain cases, no amount of effort will convince one divorced parent to work with the other, even if doing so is clearly in the best interests of shared children. In this type of scenario, Texas parents should evaluate the existing child custody structure to determine if it serves the best interests of the children involved. When one parent refuses to work with the other to place the child's interests at the forefront and the child is suffering as a result, it may be time to discuss a custody modification.  

Source: The Huffington Post, "3 Ways to Reinvent Your Holidays After a Divorce", Michela Montgomery, Nov. 8, 2015

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