How to Get Through the Holidays as a Two-Household Family
The holidays are stressful enough even before you factor in the logistics and realities of a two-household family. Divorce rates vary somewhat by state, but the family dynamics can affect the emotional and physical well-being of kids even more during the holidays.
The topic of divorced families and holidays is never a particularly easy one, but there are ways for everyone to survive the holidays as a two-household family. Here are a few ideas and tips that should help to get you started.
Challenges of Divorce with Children During the Holidays
The first holidays after divorce can be particularly difficult. But sharing the holidays after divorce doesn’t have to be an ordeal. The truth is that you will never be able to completely disconnect from your ex when there are children involved. You’ll be dealing with parental exchanges, changing schedules, holiday school activities, and so much more. Making the best of the situation rather than holding on to negative thoughts and feelings toward your former partner is the best choice for everyone.
Dealing with Co-Parenting During the Holidays: Make Hand Offs Easier
The holidays may not be easy as a two-household family, but there are ways that you can streamline the process of sharing holidays after divorce. Holiday hand-offs can be tricky, but you can help the process by being prepared, proactive, and flexible.
Spending the Holidays Together After Divorce
The first holidays after divorce, and perhaps even on an ongoing basis, might mean that you will be spending the holidays together. It’s one way to maintain some sense of normalcy for the kids, while showing a united front in your efforts to make the holidays a fun time.
Such an arrangement is easiest to achieve if you plan ahead, discuss the logistics, and set clear expectations. While it is a challenge, it does help to address the question of how to split holidays when divorced. In some cases, it might be the option that you collectively decide is in the best interest of your kids.
Creating and Respecting Co-parenting Boundaries
Sharing holidays after divorce is never easy, but it’s important to create and respect co-parenting boundaries. You need to ensure that your kids have the kind of continuity of care and support they need, with a focus on helping them process the stress and emotional challenges they face.
You don’t have to like your ex, but you do need to understand that your actions affect the physical and emotional health of your children. Seek family counseling and/or mediation to help you create and respect co-parenting boundaries. Also realize that your efforts will help your kids cope and heal, while ensuring that they also get the support they need.
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