Holiday season is here again. If you are divorced with children, the season can be challenging as you attempt to coordinate two households and extended family, trying to meet everyone’s needs simultaneously. As you begin to review your child’s wish list for the season, keep in mind certain intangible items that you won’t find in stores or online – TIME WITH BOTH PARENTS DURING THE HOLIDAYS! Please fill these wishes first:
- Ask me what I might like to do with each of you and then support that.
- Help me shop for or make a gift for my other parent, if I’m not old enough to do it myself. It feels good when I can give you each gifts that you like.
- Support me making my own decisions about when I will be staying with each of you when I’m home from college so I don’t get stressed out about it when I ought to be studying for finals.
- Don’t make me feel guilty about the gift I got or what fun I had with each of you.
- Please avoid asking questions about what I did while I spent time with the other parent.
- Let me be free of drama, bickering, or fighting about holiday plan scheduling, or other details of the season.
- Please remember that I’m not property to be divided up! I have my own needs and feelings about my family and the holidays.
- Let me celebrate family traditions that are fun and important to me. Don’t make me give them up because they’re inconvenient to you or interfere with the parenting plan schedule. People first!!
- I don’t want to rush through opening my presents or eating a meal or visiting with relatives because I have to be at my other parent’s house.
- Please enjoy time with me while I’m with you rather than complaining that you didn’t get the exact times or amount of time with me that you wanted. There is no ledger that keeps track of the amount of my love for you. Relax. Love me back. Let go of the details.
Wishing you and your family peace this holiday season…
Author: JANN GLASSER – “RESULTS NOT REGRETS” LCSW, LMFT, Divorce Coach, Mediator,Co-Parenting Specialist, Board Member at CDSOC