For most people, the holidays are a fun, cheery season spent with family and friends. But for those who are separated or divorced, the holidays could be stressful. For the first time, you need to negotiate how the holidays will work — which could involve everything from making new custody arrangements to reworking your finances.
It’s important to plan ahead, and mentally and emotionally prepare yourself for this time of year. For the best outcome for you and your family, follow these three steps to survive the holidays.
1. Make a plan
Decide where you will be, who you’ll be with and what you will do. If you have children, the plan should also contain if, and when, you will see your children or ex-spouse, and in what capacity. When you plan ahead — and follow through with your plan — you will be surprised at the outcome. It will help take the emotional guesswork out of the holidays.
2. Spend time with friends and family
After the initial shock that your regular holiday traditions are changing, you may not know where you’ll be, or who you’ll be with. Your children may spend this year with their other parent. If that’s the case, make alternative plans. Surround yourself with people; have dinner with friends, or volunteer at a local charity. Engage in activities which require your full attention and gets you involved with other people.
3. Make new traditions
A divorce or separation brings change, including alterations to your holiday traditions. But sometimes it’s good to ride the wave of change. This is a good time to embrace change and create new traditions. Do something different; find a new tradition and plan your day around it.
Following these steps will help you get through the holidays with less stress. If you are in the midst of a divorce during the holiday season, consulting with an attorney at Pacific Cascade Family Law will help ensure the process runs smoothly during the holidays, and afterward. We are experts at navigating the challenges, and changes, divorce can bring to your life. We welcome an opportunity to discuss how we can help make your tomorrow better.