Newly Divorced? A Guide to Avoiding Loneliness During the Holiday Season

Celebrating holidays when you are newly divorced can be quite a stressful time — but it doesn’t have to be. If you are without your children or family at a time when you traditionally celebrated the holidays with them, it can be a sad and lonely experience for you. Who says you can only have fun by following the traditional route or by being married? If you find yourself alone, you can still make the most of this holiday season and enjoy it on your own terms.

Here is a guide to help you avoid loneliness during the holidays.

Create new traditions. If the old traditions remind you of old days, let them go. Instead of re-creating the past, focus on creating a positive future. Throw a party, and invite your friends and family.

Take care of yourself. Physically and emotionally, both. Avoid drowning your sorrows by consuming too much alcohol or food. Over-indulging in anything especially when you are sad or worried is never a smart move.

Pamper yourself. Go for a manicure or a spa, buy a DVD, catch up on your favorite hobby. Pamper yourself the way you would want your good friend or your family member to be pampered.

Plan ahead. If you think you are going to be all by yourself, find an interesting activity or a place to travel so you can be around other people. It is nice to be surrounded with people, whether from your family or your support network.

Write. Plan how you would like to see your life post-divorce and write down the things you need to do to get there. Start doing those things now. Just keep in mind to stay in control while writing these things that you need to do.

Make use of alone time. Use your alone time do the things you’ve been putting off. Catch up on sleep, read that great book that’s been sitting on the shelf for weeks or months, call a friend you’ve been planning to meet from a long time – anything that gives you ‘me’ time.

Do something for your children. Continue making the holidays special for your children. Have them involved in developing new traditions. Plan ahead of time how you would want your children to spend their holidays.

Be flexible. If your children are unable to celebrate the holidays with you because they are going to be with their other parent, give them a phone call and wish them a happy holiday. Don’t make the children feel that they have to be with you during this special time. Let them know that you want them to enjoy themselves.

Seek help. If you can’t help feel overwhelmed and vulnerable, speak with a therapist or someone in your support group.

Wishing everyone Happy Holidays!

Holiday Tips for Separated Families (or Families Considering Separation)

The holiday spirit is all about family. But what happens when a family is in the middle of a major breakdown?

The holiday season is usually a time when families gather together. For children, this time of the year is magical. For parents, however, who are divorced or going through a divorce, it can be quite difficult, particularly when it comes to deciding where their children should spend their time.
Here are some tips to families if this is their first holiday after separation:

Is it a good idea to wait until after the holidays to announce a divorce?

Most parents want to keep it together just to make a good memory for their kids. But this can only be possible if both the parents keep their differences aside. Otherwise, the family will feel unnecessary tension.

What if you are already separated?

Many families try to divide up the ‘day’ – meaning kids spend time with one spouse in the morning and another in the afternoon. While this makes both parents happy, it can be really difficult for the kids. Another good option is to celebrate on different days with each parent, and to create your own traditions.

What if you want to introduce a new partner into your holiday traditions?

The holidays might seem like a great time because it is all about family, but you have to consider your personal situation and ask yourself if this is the right time.

What if you are a single parent and want to create the ‘magic’ of the holidays for the kids?

It can be overwhelming to fulfill the role of both the parents during the holiday season. Try spending time with other families that also have children to provide warmth and entertainment to your little ones.

How to deal with ex-in-laws who want to spend time with their grandkids, even when it’s not their turn?

This can be challenging, but remembering that they love your kids too is important. It is crucial for everyone to compromise.

Where the kids spend Christmas Day is one of the most difficult decisions. Kids should have the opportunity to see both parents over the holidays. Choices should be made that are in the best interests of the kids rather than the adults.

In the event where you cannot reach an agreeable solution then an application can be made to court. A mediator who is an independent third party can assist discussions and help parents in reaching an agreeable solution or the parties may wish to engage the services of a parenting coordinator.

The most important point is to take steps now. Don’t leave it until  only a few days before Christmas.
The Family lawyers at Sekhon Law wish everyone happy holidays!