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How to create a parenting time schedule for the holidays

On Behalf of | Nov 16, 2022 | Divorce |

Spending the holidays with our children is one of our most special traditions. However, if you are divorced and share parenting time with your ex, you might have to compromise on how much parenting time you get during the holiday season. After all, your co-parent probably wants to share the holidays with the kids too.

Though the holiday season is just around the corner, it is not too late to work out a parenting time schedule that gives you and your kids the best holidays possible. However, making a plan as far ahead of time is best so that there are no misunderstandings or surprises for either parent. Often, divorcing parents work out a schedule for splitting holiday time while working out their parenting plan. Then, both sides have a document they can refer to if they have any questions or need to enforce a holiday schedule in court.

A plan that fits your family

Every family’s plan for sharing parenting time during the holiday season is unique. It depends on factors like religion, the children’s schooling, how far apart the co-parents live and family traditions. Within these realities, parents can have a lot of room for creative solutions that are reasonable to both sides. For example, you and your ex could each get the kids for alternate Christmases. Or one parent could get Thanksgiving each year while the other does Christmas with the children. In cases where the co-parents practice different faiths, they could be willing to swap certain holidays. For example, one parent could get the children for Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur and the first night of Chanukah, while the other gets custody for Easter, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Try to keep disagreements out of sight

Whatever compromise you work out, put it in writing. Working with a family law attorney can help ensure that your custody plan for the holidays is legally valid and enforceable. And when the time comes, do your best to avoid fighting in front of the children. Stress and complications around the holidays can easily arise. Arguing with your ex or criticizing them to the kids can be traumatizing. Instead, focus on providing them the best possible holiday season.

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