If you asked your child what he wanted for the holidays after a divorce, what do you think he would say? Maybe your child would point out that he doesn't like when you fight with your ex-husband or wife, or perhaps he would point out that he wants to know his schedule. Here are a few things kids have pointed out as important factors during the holidays after a divorce.
-- Plan ahead. It's hard to make adjustments, and kids get their hopes up when they think something is happening and it then falls through. Have plans and contingency plans in place, and talk to your child about what's happening. Say, "You're going to Grandma's at 8:00 p.m.," or, "Your dad will pick you up at noon." Your child wants to know what's happening; it lessens confusion and keeps plans running smoothly.
-- Of course, you need to be able to change plans, too. If you plan too much and your child can't keep up, he might be tired or upset. You and your ex should be willing to give him a break and to do what he needs if he becomes overwhelmed.
-- Do something new! Kids love to try new things, and new traditions are great for this time of year.
-- Don't fight. You might not agree with everything going on with your ex, but keep the arguments out of sight and hearing range. Your child doesn't want to see you or his dad or mom upset.
These are just a few things kids have said they want following a divorce. Ask your child what he wants, and be prepared to discuss your parenting plan with him, so he can understand that you and your ex are working in his best interests. Our website has more information on what you can do to resolve your child custody concerns.