Thanksgiving is on the horizon in the Gulfport area and following that the winter holidays. No one wants to be reminded at the last minute what holiday custody plans they agreed on with their ex at the time of their divorce, and it is important that the child’s needs are prioritized throughout the holiday season. The following are some tips for co-parenting over the holidays.
Review your holiday parenting plan and be flexible
First, review your parenting plan well ahead of time so you know which holidays you will have with your child, and make sure your child is aware of these plans. This will avoid unwanted surprises. In addition, if plans need to change, this gives parents plenty of time to modify a child custody order through the courts. In addition to being flexible, parents should be respectful of each other’s time with the kids during the holidays by ensuring that pick-up and drop-offs happen as agreed upon.
Encourage positive communication between your child and your ex
Children deserve to have a meaningful relationship with both parents, especially during emotional times such as the holidays. Helping your child choose a gift for your ex or arranging for a phone call or email from your child to your ex on holidays can go a long way not only in fostering positive communication between your child and your ex, but also showing your child that you respect this relationship.
Respect your ex’s traditions, as long as it doesn’t harm your child
It is important to understand that your ex may have holiday traditions that differ from yours, including a parenting style that may differ from yours. As long as these things do not harm your child, it is important to understand that your ex has the right to parent your child as they see fit. Of course, it can help if parents can agree on certain ground rules if they can, to provide more stability to their child’s life. And children can also benefit from beginning new traditions with both you and your ex as they move forward post-divorce.
Seek help if you are experiencing co-parenting problems before the holidays
Ultimately, effective co-parenting can lead to a positive holiday experience for both you and your child. If you need to formally modify your child custody order or if your ex is not following your child custody order, you will want to seek legal advice to better understand your rights and options.