This video provides holiday tips for divorced parents and describes specific ways for parents to enjoy the Holidays with their children even when divorced or in the process of divorcing. These tips are taken from my previous blog post, How to Enjoy the Holiday Season for Divorced Parents.

I’m Barry Davis and I’m a divorce mediator. What I do, basically, is help keep my clients out of court. I help keep their kids out of the middle and I help them move on with their lives as quickly as possible.

I know from the work that I have done for more than a decade that the holidays can be a very difficult time for people that are divorced or especially recently divorced. So what I want to cover are some ways that they can help you deal with adjusting to the holidays now that you’re divorced or going through a divorce.

The first thing that I’d say, number one, keep your focus on your kids. The bottom line, whether you’re married or divorced, is that being able to experience the holiday season through the eyes of the children is one of the best ways to do it. If you can keep your focus on your kids rather than what you’re missing or what’s different that’s going to help you enjoy your holiday season and it’s certainly going to help them enjoy their holiday season as well. So focus on creating some special times with them work on you know going out and establishing some new traditions. Maybe there’s some favorite books or even newly favorite books that you can read with them. There’s a few things that children love more than having their parents read to them. If there’s a Christmas tree lot close by, especially maybe one we can go to cut down your own, make a day of it. Go out there with the kids have a good time. If there’s an area nearby where they just go over the top with the lights and the decorations, make a whole evening of that. If you even bring a thermos of hot chocolate that just makes it even more of an event, the children will love you. You can go online to Pinterest or other sites and look for presents that you can make together with your children. There are few things more special than giving and receiving handmade gifts and children really love being involved these kind of activities.

Second, be flexible with how you celebrate the holidays. New parenting schedules, especially if you don’t have your kids for as much time or on certain dates, can create a lot of stress, so try to be as flexible as possible. For example, be involved in activities that aren’t date specific … going out shopping with your children, going out and looking for the Christmas tree. These kinds of things aren’t just focused on the 24th and 25th. Also, maybe you do two Christmases. Maybe you celebrate Christmas the morning of the 24th if your spouse has the 25th. I can guarantee you the children will love celebrating two Christmases. That’s twice as many presents!

Number three, try to let go of the little things. I know this is easier said than done and especially during a stressful time like like the holidays. But as much as you can, try to let little things from your soon-to-be ex roll off your back. That’s going to help you enjoy the holiday season more. If you can come up with a specific schedule ahead of time or even utilize the services of a mediator to help you come up with a schedule, that will help both of you be more flexible and know when you’re going to have your children so you can plan for in advance for this.

Fourth and finally, try not to over-commit. This is good advice for any of us, married divorced, single … any of it. Try not to over-commit and try to identify and hone in on what kind of special memorable times you can spend with your children, even if you don’t have the same volume of time with them. Plan out ahead of time what you’re going to do in your time with them and really be present during this time. Focus on making new holiday memories that your children will love and enjoy for a lifetime.

So those are just four ideas on how you can try to handle the holidays if you’re recently divorced or the divorce is still impacting your family in a significant way. If you have any other questions or concerns and would like to contact me please feel free to reach out to me. I hope you have a wonderful holiday season

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