Divorce is never easy, but during the holidays, a breakup can just seem overwhelming for not only you and your ex but for your entire family. While you may feel burdened by the stress of a holiday separation, it’s important to maintain your emotions, especially for your children. Remember, at the end of this, you will all be better for it and able to move on as a family. However, we know this is easier said than done, which is why we’ve compiled a list of tips to help you through your holiday divorce, and get you to the new year, with a new start.
1. Be honest.
If you haven’t yet told your children about the divorce, it is always best to sit them down as a couple and let them know. This will give your kids a chance to ask questions, process the news, and not feel blind-sided by the separation.
Depending on your children’s age, they may not fully understand what a divorce means for your family, so be patient in answering their questions and do not make the conversation one-sided. Your kids need to know that both you and your ex are there for them no matter what.
2. Make a schedule.
Part of the stress of a divorce is in not knowing logistically how time works in your new phase of life. Sit down with your ex and go over the holiday plans making sure you both feel that your needs are met, but also that your kids are still getting to have a joyful holiday and relationship with both sides of the family.
Children often feel like they have to pick sides in a divorce, but that doesn’t have to be true in your situation. Make sure your children understand that while it’s an adjustment, having a schedule will allow them to keep a relationship with both sides of the family moving forward.
3. Still create holiday magic and memories.
Whether the divorce was mutual, or there was more happening behind the scenes, you likely are feeling down following divorce, especially at the holidays. While you need to allow yourself to grieve the loss of the relationship, it’s also important to make sure you don’t let it overwhelm the time you have with your kids. If you have traditions of making cookies, watching movies, seeing lights, decorating, going to religious services, etc., keep those up! It will keep some normalcy while you also make new memories.
4. Seek legal advice if issues arise.
You want to keep things as nonconfrontational as possible but unfortunately, the holidays can bring out the best and worst in all of us. If you are facing issues with a custody schedule, or any other matters surrounding the well being of your children, you need to seek legal advice.
A compassionate family law attorney will be able to review your options and get you and your family on a schedule and plan that works to meet the children’s best interests.
5. Call Martin Heller Potempa & Sheppard, PLLC for your family law needs.
Going through a divorce during the holidays can be difficult for all parties involved. But having an understanding and compassionate legal team to help you through these changes can make all the difference. At Martin Heller Potempa & Sheppard, PLLC, we work with Nashville families to ensure all parties’ needs are met, and that you can move forward in this next stage of life.
If you are considering a divorce, have issues with your child custody, or are a victim of domestic violence in Charlotte, Brentwood, Franklin, and other communities across Davidson and Williamson Counties, we’re here for you. Contact the Nashville family lawyers at Martin Heller Potempa & Sheppard, PLLC now for more information.