Family law: First Christmas after divorce doesn’t have to be sad

On behalf of Gary Kirk of Kirk Montoute Dawson LLP posted in Family Law on Monday, December 3, 2018.

Christmas is a joyful time spent in the love of family and friends. But when there is a feeling of loss, as there may be when it comes to divorce, the holidays can be a particularly painful time. There are tools under the family law umbrella in Canada that may help families in these situations. Kids are especially affected and there are a number of things parents can do to make it easier for everyone. The family dynamic has changed, but parents can assure their children that they will have the love of both their parents, even though they may not be living under the same roof.

It is not uncommon for kids to be sad the first Christmas after their parents have separated or divorced. It’s important to allow them to express that sadness so they can move past it. If both parents aren’t present for Christmas dinner, acknowledging the absence in a positive way will help the children to accept that. Whatever plans the parents have worked out should be in the best interests of their children. 

Children need to be involved in their own fates, so telling them when they will be with each parent may give them some peace of mind. If children are involved in making new traditions, they may actually view the holiday as being much more fun. The more involved children can be, the better.

Documents like a parenting plan can help outline what should happen around the holidays. A family law lawyer in Canada would be able to offer advice on such legal documents that often accompany separation or divorce. It’s best to have things ironed out rather than trying to make decisions at the last minute. With some planning, there is a strong possibility that the first Christmas after the end of a marriage could be harmonious, rather than fraught with anxiety.

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