Thanksgiving is coming up quickly, and as you finalize your plans for the big day, excitement about delicious food, time with family and friends, and maybe even some afternoon football is building. For blended families though, the holiday season can actually bring about more stress and heartache than restful fun. Their Thanksgiving focuses more on making sure their children are in the right place at the right time per the court’s decision for their individual circumstances, rather than enjoying a laid back day of peace and thankfulness with ALL of their loved ones.
Thus is the complication of divorce and the blending of divided families. However, this stress doesn’t have to define your holidays each year. There are ways you can alleviate the strain, and make the holiday more enjoyable for all involved, especially your children. If you are calculating the best way to keep everyone happy this Thanksgiving consider trying one of the following tips:
- Have a plan in place in advance. While not every divorced couple gets along as friends post-separation, the holidays are a time to place your differences aside and come together for the sake of your children. Try to have a civil conversation at some point before Thanksgiving day and determine what setup works best for your family on that particular year. By overcoming the uncomfortable conversation and having a detailed plan in place for drop-off times, pickup times, and locations, the day will go much more smoothly and your kids will know what to expect.
- Be understanding and work together if possible. Perhaps your ex’s new family travels for Thanksgiving and will need an extra day to get there in time for turkey. It could be worth relinquishing one of “your” days and trading them off for the weekend after, or even for another holiday (like Christmas), so you can enjoy several consecutive days of quality time with your kids. If you are the one needing special accommodations, and your former spouse is understanding and agreeable, be sure to remember that the next time they ask a favor in regards to scheduling.
- Stay positive. No holiday is fun when children are listening to their parents bicker, or criticize the other parent behind their back. Stay positive for your kids, at least on the outside, and save the venting for a friend or close family member. Even better, breathe through it, and enjoy some stress relief on your own once your kids are with their other parent. Your kids will appreciate that you made the holiday a happy one, and their pleasant demeanors will drastically improve everyone’s moods.
Thanksgiving is about appreciating our many blessings and enjoying time with the ones we love. Even if divorce has divided your household in the past, this is the time to come together as a unified front for your children, and make the holidays special for them. By handling the holidays with respect, understanding, and compassion you are not only making the day less stressful, but also serving as a good example for your children of what the holidays are really about.
If you are currently going through a divorce or preparing to separate from your spouse in the near future, Sessums Law Group is ready to help you with the transition and the process. We make sure you can focus on yourself (and, if applicable, on your children) instead of stressing about the details of a case. Our legal team STANDS FOR YOU in your divorce, so you are left with the best possible outcome. We are proud to be your trusted lawyers throughout the greater Tampa Bay area. Give us a call!