It's hard to believe that it's already September and Christmas is just around the corner. If you're a separated parent, now is the time to start planning how you're going to manage Christmas with your co-parent. Having the conversation and making decisions early will make things much easier for everyone when (as we know too well) Christmas creeps up on us and before we know it we’ll be juggling Christmas parties, end of school year functions, work, shopping, and booking holidays.
Here are 7 tips for a successful co-parenting Christmas:
- Talk to your co-parent early. The sooner you start talking about your plans for Christmas, the better. This will give you both time to plan and prepare so that everyone knows what to expect.
- Make decisions in writing. This will help avoid any miscommunication or misunderstandings down the road. Plus, it will be helpful to have a written record of your agreement in case you need to refer back to it later.
- Be flexible. There will inevitably be some things that you can’t control, so it’s important to be flexible and go with the flow. This is especially important if you have children because their needs should always come first.
- Put your children first. Speaking of children, they should always be your top priority when it comes to co-parenting during the holiday season (and really, anytime). Try to put aside your personal feelings and focus on what’s best for them.
- Set boundaries with your ex. Just because you’re co-parenting doesn’t mean that you have to be friends with your ex. It’s okay (and even necessary) to set boundaries so that everyone knows what is expected of them.
- Communicate with each other regularly. Once you have a plan in place, make sure to communicate regularly with each other so that everyone is on the same page. This includes any changes or updates to the plan as well as any obstacles or challenges that come up along the way.
- Be positive, patient, and kind; remember the true meaning of Christmas; take some time for yourself; reach out for help if you need it.
By following these simple tips, you can make it through this holiday season with minimal stress and maximum joy!
Is it your first year separated and you’re not sure where to start?
If you've separated this year and it is your first Christmas after separation, we understand that this is an unsettling and emotional time. But don't worry, we're here to help. Our team of experts can help with your custody issues and are offering a free 30 minute consultation via zoom or phone until the end of October to get you settle your Christmas plans.
Struggling to come to an agreement?
Sometimes though it’s hard to come to an agreement that works for each household. Sometimes, even just having that discussion with your ex-partner is not possible. Our team can help guide you through tricky issues and map out a plan.
Disagreements can take a little bit of time to work through. When emotions are running high it can be even harder to think clearly about your options. A mediator or lawyer can help steer you towards solutions. If alternate dispute resolution is not workable or appropriate for your circumstances, the Court can decide who will have the kids and the specific arrangements (including in relation to any travel plans). If out-of-Court options aren’t possible, a Christmas application needs to be filed with the Court by 12 November 2021.
Get the plans in writing
Even if you have an established pattern of ‘who has the kids’ over Christmas, it’s always good to confirm things in writing with your co-parent early.
Christmas is a time for family, love, and happiness—not stress. Let us assist you and simplify the process so you can enjoy this holiday season with minimal stress and maximum joy!
Our lawyers can chat with new clients for a free 15-minute, obligation free phone call. We understand it’s a busy time of year, if you can’t make an appointment during work hours we can also offer lunch break or After hours Lounge room Lawyer appointments.